TODAY, we once more focus our editorial comment on education, especially enrolment in Senior High School and tertiary institutions as the new academic year approaches, with its attendant challenge of qualified candidates’ vis-à-vis limited academic and accommodation facilities.

It is without doubt that education is key to our development. It is the vehicle through which knowledge, skills, attitudes, values and character are imbibed by the beneficiaries to build the required human capital for our socio-economic development.

Given that education is our lifeline as a country; we therefore, need to adopt pragmatic approaches to address the imbalance between enrolment and provision of academic facilities to ensure smooth teaching, learning and research.

The Ghanaian Times has held the position in our earlier editorial that there is the need to integrate population variables in our development agenda, so that we can achieve a balanced development in terms of matching qualified candidates with provision of infrastructure to cater for their enrolment and admissions at every level of education.

It is against this backdrop that we add our voice to the “multi track system” being advocated by the renowned academic and educationist, Professor Jophus Anamuah-Mensah, to ensure enrolment of the large number of the Basic Education Certificate Examination candidates who sit for the examinations annually.

Under the multi track system, as postulated by Prof. Anamuah-Mensah, while one track of students are in school, another track of students will be on holidays and when those in  school are going for holidays those on holidays will also be leaving for school.

He contended that the current trimester system in second cycle school would have to be changed to a semester system to conform to the tertiary education system, explaining further that China and South American countries were using the system to address challenges of congestion as a result of limited infrastructure in the educational sector.

The education consultant postulates that the approach would maximise the use of available resources and provide education for greater number of pupils without multiplying investment, as investment in infrastructure development is capital intensive.

We see a lot of merit in the suggestion and, therefore, associate ourselves with the proposals by the revered educationist and urge policymakers to give it a trial at least on pilot basis to draw lessons for possible universal implementation

We share in this view because of the startling statistics he used to buttress his proposal where he said for instance that in 2014, 113,260 representing 29.3 per cent out of the 386,412 candidates who though were placed, could not be enrolled, while a total of 115,363 out of the 415,012 BECE candidates, representing 27.8 per cent in 2015, were placed but could not be enrolled.

Similarly, Prof Anamuah-Mensah added that in 2016, out of the 420,00,135 candidates that were placed, 111,336 of them, representing  26.5 per cent, could not enroll while 62,453 candidates, representing 14.7  per cent  out of 424,224 who were placed could not be enrolled.

He further added that the projection for 2018 shows that out of the 521,710 candidates who registered for the BECE, the number of candidates anticipated to be placed is 49,610, out of which a projected 24,880 candidates will not be enrolled.

The question to ask is; what then is the fate of these pupils who are most unlikely to get enrolled, though have been placed? Let’s try the Prof Anamuah-Mensah multi-track system, to help resolve the placement and enrolment imbalance.



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