Cancel BECE – educationist recommends

A UK- based Ghanaian educationist,Prince Hamidu Armahbelieves the Basic Education Cer­tificate Education (BECE) has become a major impediment to access to secondary education should be cancelled.

He indicated that an education sys­tem where after primary six, the stu­dent could progress to six years senior high school (SHS) education from SHS 1 to SHS 6 is what the country needs.

The educationist stressed that expanding access to secondary educa­tion is not only a matter of building new schools, or rehabilitating and expanding existing ones, neither is it about providing free secondary educa­tion, but, “It is conceptually about removing barriers to secondary educa­tion which BECE has been widely acknowledged.”

He stated, “For if we build more new schools and refurbish existing ones without a corresponding increased enrolment in these schools,of what sense is it?” he queried.

Mr Armah, a former tutor at St John’s School in Sekondi and current­ly a PhD candidate (Mathematics Edu­cation) of the University of Aberdeen, UK, was commenting on the fallen standards of education in Ghana in an interview with DAILY GUIDE.

He proposed that between SHS 4 to SHS 6, students could write exami­nations and present coursework lead­ing to entry to vocational education and training nursing and teacher train­ing colleges, polytechnics and other higher educational levels.

“Our appetite for grouping all post-secondary education in one homogeneous entity should be aban­doned as they have different roles to play in training the human resource needs of the country/’ he added.

Mr Armah suggested that the country’s internal examinations could be moderated by a proposed examina­tion body to be called the Ghana Examination and Qualification Authority (GEQA).

The proposed GEQA, among oth­ers, could perform the functions of the West African Examination Council (WAEC) and provide accreditation for pre-tertiary schools who write their examination as well.

“This also means we would no longer be under the over 50 years WAEC treaty where examination does not reflect the needs of Ghanaian soci­ety,” the educationist added.

He pointed out that the WAEC cer­tificates issued to secondary school graduates appeared to be sub-stan­dard as holders are required to take foundation programmes before entry to undergraduate degree courses at UK universities.

Mr Armah indicated that Ghana needs to set up a National Credit and Qualification Framework (NCQF) that would clearly specifies each qualifica­tion and its level, which would feed into the whole education system.

“I recommend that the present National Technical and Vocational Education and Training Qualifications Framework (NTVETQF) be reviewed and integrated into the proposed NCQF,” he stated

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