A Chemical Engineer and Author, Dr MaameYaa Bosuo Norman, has called for a holistic approach to addressing prevailing gaps in Ghana’s educational system.
Key, she said, was the need to prioritise students’ interestswhen tailoring teaching and learning activities to meet their aspirations and help them fit into the competitive world.
Speaking to the Ghanaian Times at the launch of her book; “Next Level Education: Game changer-Voices of our Future Leaders,” Dr Norman said bringing students to the table was crucial to shaping the current educational landscape and achieving expected outcomes.
The 120-paged book captures the reservations of students on Ghana’s educational system and makes proposals on how to address the challenges to equip the future generation with core skills that suit global context.
It was inspired by experiences and insights shared by students of Achimota Secondary School in 2018 following a keynote address delivered by the author on “Quality Secondary, Technical and Vocational Education; A Catalyst for National Development”.
Dr Norman said despite strides made in the country’s educational system, products were largely unable to apply knowledge acquired in practical life course.
“I think it’s because we are not listening to our students and not giving them the relevant skills to apply what they learn.
So for instance, if we are teaching Mathematics; percentages, we should be able to talk about mortgages, loans etc. In science, topics like biology, let students go out, feel the real life samples to better relate to the topic instead of the theories. It is important kids see especially why it matters to learn a certain subject,” she urged.
Dr Norman pleaded with parents and guardians not to impose their desires on their wards, instead, “let us listen and guide them. If your child wants to do something outside your wish, it’s not a failure on your part as a parent”.
She called for the strengthening of career guidance and counselling units within the educational system, saying “we need a multifaceted approach to solving the challenges with the educational system; parents, educators, policymakers and government are tangible to making the change happen.
“Technical and Vocational Education Training (TVET) must be funded and the legislature must make sure we protect TVET because it is critical for societal and economic growth. It’s more of a mindset change and everybody plays a role,” she noted.
Meanwhile, about 200 selected schools across the country are set to receive copies of the book to encourage both students and teachers to explore innovative methods of teaching and learning.
BY ABIGAIL ANNOH