PTAs want independence

Prof. Naana Opoku-Agyemang, Education MinisterThe Volta Regional Chapter of the National Council of Parent-Teacher Associations has asked the Ghana Education Service (GES) to accord the association full recognition as an independent partner in the education structure. 

According to the association, it was necessary it to be allowed to play its role as part of the “effective tripod structure” in the provision of quality education, adding that it need a free hand to generate its revenue to support the management of schools.

Francis Ovulley, General Secretary of the Chapter, at a news conference at Ho on Tuesday, urged the GES to focus on its monitoring and supervision role, and not the management of PTA dues and levies.

In addition, he said it was time the PTAs were allowed to generate and run their own revenue to improve school environments rather than the current situation where some school heads manipulated school structures to become signatories to PTA accounts, and loaded PTA levies with many items.

“We recount a directive from GES asking heads of SHS to incorporate PTA funds into mainstream school accounts and making school Heads and Bursars signatories to PTA accounts thereby usurping PTA funds,” he stated.

Mr. Ovulley expressed worry about the situation where PTAs were asked to seek approval from GES before billing themselves for school projects, indicating that the trend needed to stop because the associations were not accountable to the GES but themselves.

He also described as “unrealistic” and “very undemocratic” the GES policy, which sets a ceiling on PTA levies and dues in public second cycle schools.

“For one thing, PTAs are democratic social units moved to action by the compelling interest of the majority,”

Therefore, he said, the policy that regulated PTA levies was improper and infringed on the rights of parents because all PTAs were legally established and had constitutions.

Mr Ovulley explained that PTAs reflected the state, character, and aspirations of each school and to standardise their levies and dues would stifle innovation and the desire to create better teaching and learning environment.

From Kafui Gati, Ho.

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