The Ghana Education Service (GES) in the Upper West Region has commenced a programme to get children of school going age back in school after the long Coronavirus (CODVID1-19) break.
Dubbed “Back to School”, the programme, which is being implemented with about 330 officers who have been deployed to the 11 municipal and district assemblies across the region, would be used to sensitise parents on the need to ensure the children were sent back to school.
The Regional Director for Education, Mr Razak Abdul-Korah, who made this known in an interview with the Ghanaian Times on Monday in Wa, on measures taken to get every student back in school, indicated that to ensure the success of the programme, each assembly had been served with 30 of the officers.
As a result of the long break, some of the pupils and students were put under apprenticeship to learn skills such as weaving, sewing, and welding, whereas others had gained employment at drinking spots and eating places and were earning income for the house.
The fear of not allowing these children go back to school as a result of the economic activities they were engaged in, according to the Regional Director, informed the decision of the GES to introduce the programme in all regions across the country.
“When the second years at the junior high and senior high schools were asked to go back to school, for instance, we realised that a number of them did not report to school and majority of them were females and so we want to stop this trend with this programme,” he said.
Mr Abdul-Korah said the officers would make use of the various radio stations and community centres within the respective assemblies to sensitise parents to the need to ensure that their children were sent back to school.
“We also will work through circuit supervisors of the GES to identify students who would absent themselves from school in the first week of reopening and get our officers to trace and get them back to school,” he said.
The director indicated that girls who were pregnant or had delivered in the course of the long break would be assigned counsellors who were a part of the 30-member team to psyche them up and get them to return to school after weaning the babies.
According to Mr Abdul-Korah, the GES was interested in ensuring that every child acquired basic education irrespective of the existence of the CODVID-19 pandemic and its attendant problems, adding that people who had received basic education were better positioned to learn craftsmanship than those who had not.
He added the officers of the “Back to School” programme had received national and regional training respectively, to undertake the task and were well resourced for the job, adding that with their diligence, he was hopeful that majority of school children would not have their basic school education truncated.