Ghana’s stone age educational system must be fixed- UTAG boss

The National President of the University Teachers’ Association of Ghana (UTAG), Dr.  Samuel Bekoe, says the country’s educational system is still in the era of stone age and something drastic must be done to change it.

Speaking on Jinapor’s Take, on JoyNews on Multi-TV, Dr. Bekoe in the company of Dr. Ahmed Jinapor, Lecturer at the University of Education, Winneba and Prof. Henry Augustine Pufaa   who is also an Associate Professor at the University of Education, bemoaned the JHS structure which to a large extent is denying most of the country’s crop of basic school graduates the opportunity to forge ahead in their educational ladder.

He observed that though ‘it is the concept of the JHS level to prepare the child for vocational work, it is skewed towards going to SHS alone regardless of individual interests’.

Prof. Pufaa decried the standardized assessment system which eventually determines the fate of all pupils irrespective of the inequalities existing in their pursuit of education.

He emphasized that the continuous assessment being used in basic schools now must be reviewed.

He believes ‘the road map hasn’t been laid out for proper assessment’ insisting that ”we must correct the system; the schools must have the type of teachers needed before you accept them”

Dr. Samuel Bekoe describes as ‘unfair and wrong’ the existing general standards used to assess every pupil regardless of the quality of training and tuition they’ve received to determine whether they’ve passed or failed an exam, with particular reference to the JHS BECE.

Prof Henry Augustine Pufaa further proposed that an extra year be added to the JHS system. He explained that this extra year would mainly aid the child to decide where to go; ‘whether secondary or technical without much influence from outside’.

For him, if this is done it would reduce the hustle that comes with finding the appropriate secondary school for the child.

On the issue on how to access results, Prof Pufaa expressed his displeasure in the fact that students had to pay as much as GHs 7.00 in order to access their results. He feels ‘there should be a system where students and parents can access results free of charge.’

Dr. Samuel Bekoe added that in order to develop a better educational system, we need to first ask the question ‘what type of person does Ghana hope to present after the JHS level?”

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