The Western Regional Chairman of the National Council of Parent Teacher Associations, Daniel Vroom-Laryea, has bemoaned the fact that the government has been excluded from the management of the senior High schools. According to him, although the free Senior High School policy is a good one, it will not succeed without the support of parents.
“Parents are now being prevented from helping the schools, but we must know that free SHS is meaningless without the support of parents. We even recorded over 21 pregnancies in one of the senior high schools last year, because the school had no wall, and the students were being sneaked out. We are not being made to help, the government has stopped PTA from doing everything in the schools and that is a problem”, he added.
Mr. Vroom-Laryea said this in an interview on Connect FM’s Omanbapa morning show on January 15. His comment was in reaction to a revelation by the Sekondi Takoradi Metropolitan Director of the Ghana Education Service, Sally Nelly Coleman that over 137,000 fresh students placed in the 2023 Computerized School Selection and Placement System (CSSPS) into Senior High Schools and Technical and Vocational Education and Training Schools across the country, have not showed up for admissions in their various Senior High Schools.
It would be recalled that the Ghana Education Service in the latter part of last year, released the computer placement list for fresh students who were to be admitted into the various Senior High Schools in the country. The reopening date was also stated as January 3, 2024. Mr Coleman, in an interview on the same show, described the situation as very worrying.
“About 590,000 were placed in the various schools nationwide. So far, 453,000 have reported for admissions. So about 137,000 are still home, they have not reported to their various schools for admissions. We are pleading with parents to go for the admissions” ” she lamented.
Mr. Vroom-Laryea said the situation could be attributed to what he termed an unfavourable reopening date. “The re-opening date for the schools was not favorable for both parents and the students. Cocoa farmers in the rural areas are complaining that they had little yield in the year and so they don’t have the money to take their children to school.
They must fill their chop boxes, some parents are even renting for their children to be in school, they must buy a lot of things for them to be in school. So, all those who have not reported, it is due to financial issues. The free SHS is becoming more expensive than we thought. There are more hidden issues to the free senior high school than we have all been made to believe,” he indicated.