The Upper East Regional Coordinating Council (RCC) on Tuesday held a crunch meeting to develop a roadmap to curb the menace of students’ unrest in senior high schools (SHSs) in the region.
The meeting which was chaired by the regional minister who is also the Head of the Regional Security Council (REGSEC) attracted stakeholders including headmasters and teachers of the SHSs in the region, as well as the staff of the regional and district education directorates.
For this year alone about eight SHs in the region experienced student unrest with the latest ones being the Kongo SHS in the Nabdam District, the Sandema Senior High Technical School in the Builsa North and the Saint Benedict SHS also in the Navrongo municipality.
Addressing the journalists after the closed-door meeting with the stakeholders, the Regional Minister, Mrs Paulina Patience Abayage, identified the engagement of school cadets to punish students, poor supervision of teachers, lack of infrastructure for teachers to stay in school, restricted of students communication, lack of enforcement of school rules and regulation, the lack of gathering of intelligence as some of the major causes of student unrest.
Proposing the way forward to deal with the phenomena, the Regional Minister tasked the Regional Education Directorate to set up a committee to go round all the SHSs in the region to sensitise the students to desist from engaging in rioting and rather use the appropriate channels in addressing their concerns.
She underscored the need for the head teachers and teachers to desist from using school cadets to discipline students, but to rather engage school prefects and the leadership of the Students Representative Council (SRC).
Whilst calling on the head teachers and the teachers to be firm and fair in enforcing discipline on students to serve as deterrent to others, the regional minister also entreated them to operate an open-door policy.
It was also proposed that teachers who were found to be engaging in indiscipline such as inciting students to go on rampage should be sanctioned.
The Regional Director of the Ghana Education Service, Mr Augustine G. Ayirezang, impressed upon the heads of the institutions to adopt swift measures to deal with students instead of allowing the situation to escalate into students riots.
FROM SAMUEL AKAPULE, BOLGATANGA