Time to crack whip on non-per forming schools

It IS reported elsewhere in this newspaper that the Education Minister, Dr Yaw Osei Adutwum, has threatened to close down non-performing schools if they do not improve on their performance.

Dr Adutwum who was speaking to Conference of Heads of Assisted Second­ary Schools (CHASS) and Principals of Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) institutions in Kumasi at the weekend, tasked the schools to improve their educational outcomes or risk being closed down.

According to the report, the Minister explained that closing down the schools would help save the nation the huge financial loss being incurred by the government as a result of the existence of such schools.

He said a school with a consistent zero to 10 per cent pass rate should put together intervention programmes to ensure that majority of their students found opportu­nities for further studies rather than becoming a liability to their parents and society due to their inability to pass their exam.

The Education Minis­ter stated that instead of such schools continuing to operate; they should rather be closed down so that the affected students would be redistributed to nearby schools so they could continue their edu­cation.

Indeed, the standards of education in some of the public primary and sec­ondary schools admittedly have been very poor for a long time. The Minister’s threat does not surprise many including the Ghana­ian Times.

As a matter of fact, many would have wished that such a policy would have been implemented several years ago to serve as a check on schools across the country.

We are aware that many factors contribute to poor performance of schools, some of which are be­yond the schools but that is why it is necessary for the non-performing schools to draw up inter­vention programmes that would identify the chal­lenges facing the schools.

The Ghanaian Times supports the Minister’s position and would like to encourage the school heads to embrace the challenge to improve on their performance.

The government is already spending a large chunk of the tax payers’ money to provide free senior high school educa­tion and the least those who have been put in charge of these schools could do is to ensure good performance by the schools.

That is not to say that, the government must not provide other needs such as comput­ers, science laboratories, librar­ies among others to ensure effective teaching and learning in the schools.

Although, we acknowledge that some schools face severe constraints, we cannot con­tinue to look on while they perform poorly. We must take steps to ensure that we reverse the trend to ensure good per­formance. And if one of the ways is to close them down and redistribute the students to other schools, then, let’s do it.

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