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Monday, May 23, 2022

Semester system for basic schools: Proposal is dead on arrival, kick it out

Thomas Musah is the General Secretary of GNAT

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The General Secretary of the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT), Thomas Musah, has described the decision by the government to introduce a semester system at the basic level of education as one that is dead on arrival.

He explained that it does not make professional sense that people who are at their formative years of education, would be subjected to such a system as going through semesters.

Citing international bodies like the UNICEF who have universally agreed learn through interaction and action, he believes the move is a wrong one.

“At the basic level, we teach; we don’t lecture, and if you look at UNICEF’s own concept of teaching and learning, they have what we call learning through play. You don’t go and lecture somebody at KG level: you learn through what we call play, it is activity-oriented. If you start with the children with this activity-oriented approach, and don’t forget that you are now doing that standard based curriculum, and this is a child-centered learning which is international,” he said.

In an interview on the JoyNews, monitored by GhanaWeb, he further explained that it gets worse that the new proposal seeks to keep children in school for up to six months.

This, he added, is not something that is practical and he explains why.

“And while we accept that even with UNICEF, who are promoting this, that children must learn through play, by 12:00, the KG children would have been tired and you see them sleeping in the class. Aside all that, you are asking the children to stay in school from January to somewhere June,” he added.

Thomas Musah also said that in all of his professional life as a teacher, this is an unthought-of thing for him and he is sure that even before its implementation, it is a decision that will fail.

“I have been in the system since 1989; you can calculate the number of years I have been in the teaching profession and so this particular thing that we are saying, it is dead on arrival; it is dangerous. To introduce a semester system at the KG level, it is dangerous,” he said.

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