NPP MP calls for reopening of schools

File photo: Some SHS students

The New Patriotic Party (NPP) Member of Parliament (MP) for the Kade Constituency, Kwabena Ohemeng Tinyaase is calling on the government to re-open Senior and Junior High Schools.

According to the MP, the extended period of the student’s stay at home will impact their academics negatively.

Speaking with JoyNews’ Joseph Opoku Gakpo, Mr Tinyaase, stated that “the children are doing worse things and not complying with the Covid-19 protocols”.

“Even parents are complaining that the children have spent more time at home than necessary and they do not even have time to look after their own children”, he added.

His comment comes after the President Akufo-Addo, in his 16th address to the nation on the measures taken by the government to curtail the spread of Covid-19, announced the reopening of schools for second year JHS and SHS students effective October 5, to enable them to complete their academic calendar.

Mr Tinyaase explained that the success in reopening schools for the final year students of both SHS and JHS is evidence that the school can run in spite of the pandemic insofar as all Covid-19 safety protocols are established.

“We have the SHS people finished their exams, the JHS people have also gone through all the preparation and by next week, they will finish and we have not had any serious casualty.”

“The position I am inferring is that then why don’t we all go by the various good measures that we have put down, to make sure that we can move the process a little faster,” he stated.

The Member of Parliament added that schools have shown that the health and well being of students can be adequately protected even under the prevailing conditions.

His calls are supported by research from Africa Education Watch, a policy research and advocacy agency that has warned that more teenage girls are likely to become pregnant if schools remain closed.

This research was conducted in 200 schools across the country; 100 junior high schools (JHS) and senior high school (SHS) during the reopening period for finalist.

Findings from the research found that 20 per cent of the schools sampled recorded cases of girls not returning to school because 85 per cent of the girls were pregnant and 15 per cent were early married.

The advocacy organisation believes this could spell doom for young girls in JHS and SHS.

Also, adding their voice, the Conference of Heads of Private Second-Cycle Schools (CHOPSS) has urged government to include first-year Junior High and Senior High Schools’ students in the October 5 reopening of schools, to enable them to complete the academic calendar.

CHOPASS said the Form 1 students, like the Form 2 students were not too far-off from sitting their respective exit examinations, adding that a longer break in their academic work would impact negatively on their performance.

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