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Sunday, February 25, 2024

10 SHS Heads In Trouble Over ‘Borla’, Track Suit, Petrol Fees

 

HEADS OF eight Senior High Schools (SHS) in the Ashanti Region are in trouble as they have been accused of allegedly collecting unapproved fees from first year students.

The heads of Asanteman SHS, Kumasi Senior High Technical School, Kumasi Girls SHS, Manso Edubia SHS, Agric Nzema Community School, Collins SHS, Berekum SHS and Nkawei Senior High Technical School were alleged to be collecting unauthorised fees.

The school heads were charging petrol fee, ‘borla’ fee, lunch bag fee, track suit fee, motivation fee, SRC dues and entrance fee among others.

Earlier, the headmistresses of Ghana Senior High School (GHANASS) in Koforidua and O’Reilly Senior High School (SHS) in Accra were also interdicted for charging unauthorised fees.

This brings the number of school heads identified for charging unauthorised fees to ten.

The Ghana Education Service (GES), in separate letters addressed to the heads of the affected senior high schools, raised the issue of the collection of unapproved monies from students placed in their schools, which is against the code of conduct.

“It has come to the notice of management, the collection of unauthorised monies as part of the admission process,” the letters, authored on December 8, 2023, stated.

It further said the unauthorised monies included payments for house dues, sale of books, sale of calculators, and sale of anniversary cloth, among others.

The letters noted that, “based on the above and as the code of conduct stipulates, you are to step aside for investigations to be conducted.”

The GES therefore ordered the heads to immediately hand over, thereby paving way for an independent investigation into the case.

“You are hereby directed to hand over all properties of the school with effect from December 8, 2023 to the Regional Director of Education,” the GES directed.

The GES has expressed commitment in upholding the integrity of the educational system, providing equal opportunities for all students, and ensuring that the Free SHS policy is effectively implemented.

As investigations continue, the GES urges students, parents, and members of the public to report any incidents of unauthorised item selling or unapproved fee charging. This is to assist in identifying and addressing any individuals or institutions involved in such activities.

The Ministry of Education and the GES have assured that appropriate actions will be taken against individuals found guilty of violating the regulations and policies of the Free SHS initiative.

Response

Meanwhile, the interdicted headmistress of GHANASS, Patience Naki Mensah, has responded to the allegations of selling unauthorised items to first year students.

Ms. Mensah indicated her decision was in compliance with the National Prospectus, allowing schools to tailor their uniforms to their own specifications.

According to her, GHANASS does not use the standard white and check uniforms, opting for unique colours of yellow shirts and leaf green trousers/skirts in place of the white-white or check uniforms.

She said the school commissioned a seamstress to create samples of the new ceremonial dress, priced at GH¢200, and the track suit at GH¢250 per set, adding that parents were given the option to purchase immediately or at a later date.

Ms. Mensah underscored that the GH¢250 track suit aims to protect students from mosquito bites during evening preps while maintaining school uniformity and alleviating the financial burden on parents.

Her detailed explanation forms part of her defence against the alleged unauthorised sales, pending further investigation into the matter.

FROM I.F. Joe Awuah Jnr., Kumasi

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