High failure rate in science and mathematics needs to stop – Minister

General News of Sunday, 19 February 2017

Source: GNA

2017-02-19

Vetting Mathew Opoku Prempeh NapoDr Mathew Opoku Prempeh, Minister for Education

Education Minister, Dr. Mathew Opoku-Prempeh, has expressed concern about the low grades that continue to be scored, in mathematics and science by candidates presented for the West African Senior High School Certificate Examination (WASSCE).

He said given the critical nature of the two subjects to the nation’s development agenda, the trend could not continue.

Addressing a capacity-building workshop for heads of senior high schools (SHS) in Kumasi, he said the Ministry was determined to go the extra mile to ensure strong performance by students in the core subjects.

It was in line with this that the Ghana Education Service (GES) had been directed to hold the heads of school, which persistently recorded failure rate of 90 percent or more in the core subjects, to account.

The West African Examination Council (WAEC) Chief Examiner’s Report for the last five years shows that Ghanaian SHS students have been performing abysmally in mathematics and science.

The report indicates that 18 percent of the total number of candidates presented for science in 2016 scored F9, compared with the 37 percent in 2015, and 36 per cent in 2014.

For mathematics, 38 percent of the total number of students presented for the examination in 2016 scored F9, as against 45 per cent in 2015, and 32 per cent in 2014.

The workshop, organised by the Ministry in collaboration with the GES brought together in excess 700 headmasters from both public and private SHS.

It was structured to expose them to modern teaching methodologies and modules to enhance the performance of their students in this year’s examination, expected to start next month.

Additionally, it provided the opportunity to brief the school heads on policies and programmes being rolled out to improve their conditions of service and general welfare.

Dr. Opoku-Prempeh said the Ministry would deepen the engagement with education stakeholders and organise regular refresher courses for teachers to build their capacity for efficient classroom performance.

Mr. Joseph Kor, Director-General of the GES, urged the heads to ensure discipline and effective supervision in the schools.

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