General News of Friday, 28 July 2017
The government has served notice that only students who pass their Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) will benefit from its trumpeted Free Senior High School policy.
The Minister of Education Minister Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh outlining the plan for the Free SHS policy that will be rolled out in September 2017, at a media encounter Thursday said qualified students must also be placed under the current Computerised School Selection Placement System (CSSPS).
He disclosed that the Free SHS programme which will also cover agricultural, vocational and technical institutions at the high school level programme will cost over Gh¢400 million per academic year, and can be enjoyed by only Ghanaians.
“You must accept to be placed in a public school and you also enroll in the public school,” Dr. Prempeh mentioned as one of the criteria. “If I put you in a school and you say you won’t go, no scholarship will be offered to a person who says he won’t go and expect the scholarship to be maintained.”
Dr Opoku Prempeh said “for our best schools in this country (82 of them) 30% of their places will be reserved as a right to those from public schools across Ghana. The young lady from Nankpaduri who aspires to go to Wesley Girls and gets aggregate 24 should have a chance of going there than my daughter from Accra. There should be equity and we have to give chance to those who do not have.”
He emphasized that the Akufo Addo government is fully funding the entire programme which means “there will be no admission fees, no library fees, no science centre fees, no computer lab fees, no examination fees, no utility fees; there will be free textbooks, free boarding, and free meals, and day students will get a meal at school for free.
“No student will be driven out of school for non-payment of Parent Teacher Association (PTA) dues; it is a voluntary organisation.”