The National Union of Ghana Students wishes to use this opportunity to state its position on the state of the Nation’s address that was delivered by President of the Republic, H.E. Nana Addo Dankwah Akufo Addo.
We at NUGS are pleased to note with delight when the president stated that “We are not sparing any efforts to make education in Ghana of the best quality and for the needs of 21st Century” but we urge the Government not to make it just a word of mouth but must be backed by actions for the betterment of education and youth development in the country.
NEW STANDARDS BASED CURRICULUM FROM KINDERGARTEN TO CLASS 6 IN PRIMARY SCHOOLS
In the president’s speech, he stated that a new standards-based curriculum will be rolled out from Kindergarten to class 6 in primary schools which he stated will focus on making Ghanaian children confident, innovative, creative- thinking, digitally-literate, well rounded, patriotic citizens with Mathematics, Science, Reading and Writing at the heart of this new curriculum.
Fidelity of implementation of educational policies continues to be a big challenge in Ghana primarily because in most cases the teachers who are the final implementers of the curriculum are sidelined. However, it is not too late to kick-start a nationwide sensitization and familiarization of the new curriculum for the teachers at the basic level.
NUGS lauds this initiative but we believe that making history a part of these key focus of study at the infant level will help shape the mindsets and mentality of the school children since knowing their history and that of their forefathers who sacrificed for them yesterday will go along way in helping improve their servitude for the future. The union believes that school children must be taught in their local languages. Over these years, governments upon governments have tried their best in ensuring that schools teach with their local languages but not a concrete decision has over the years been made to make it possible. We believe that you will work at ensuring that this dream by the National Union of Ghana Students is achieved.
LEGISLATION TO REDEFINE BASIC EDUCATION TO INCLUDE SENIOR HIGH SCHOOL
The President spoke about the need to make legislation to Senior High Schools a part of the basic education.
NUGS believes that this idea is laudable but in making such a legislation the Government must take into consideration the various questions, suggestions and comments that have been given over these past two years of its introduction so as to help shape the Free Senior High School Policy for the betterment of the future of the Country. Indeed, NUGS believes that Free Education is important therefore we encourage that regular checks should be done to ensure feasibility of the policy , provide students with capabilities they require to become economically productive, develop sustainable livelihoods, contribute to peaceful and democratic societies and enhance individual well-being. It’s necessary that an assessment of the quality of the policy over these past two years is done to make the policy better. This also should inform the kind of curriculum that is implemented at the secondary level. It should be the kind of curriculum that positions the student not only for tertiary education but also for the world of work.
CONSTRUCTION OF 10 TECHNICAL AND VOCATIONAL EDUCATION TRAINING (TVET)
NUGS lauds such a plan and it’s of the firm believe that the construction of 100 new TVET centres will help serve as centers to improve career path for students and the youth of Ghana who may not have gotten the opportunity to enter the Senior Secondary Education System. However, the Ministry should also continue with its renovation of the existing TVET centres and equip them with the needed teaching and learning resources. In fact, agricultural institutes should be given the same attention and if possible the construction of new agricultural institutes should also be a priority.
10 SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY, ENGINEERING, MATHEMATICS (STEM) CENTRES BEING BUILT
NUGS was pleased to note that plans are in place to build 10 STEM Centers to provide training on science and technology for students and youth of this country. The union believes that the inclusion of Science and technology into the basic education development is also key to the progress of this country, especially the world which is gradually moving into a digitised world in order not to let the youth and students lag behind in terms of Science and technology development.
The Ghanaian education system is of more theoretical therefore we plead that a more practical aspect of the syllabus should be introduced , it would ensure a more technical know how in the field of study.
NUGS believes that the Presidential Advisory Council on Science, Technology and Innovation under the Leadership of Prof.Edward Ayensu will help set a new path for the advancement of science and technology Development in the country.
TERTIARY EDUCATION POLICY
The National Union of Ghana Students calls on the Government to invovle the student leaders on the Tertiary Education Policy Bill since they are the major stakeholders in its implementation. NUGS has not been consulted on the Tertiary Education Policy Bill neither has any bloc and Students’ Representative Council been and we at NUGS believes that in as much as the idea behind it is good and will help centralised the development of the public institutions, consulting and involving the student leadership for broader input will help Shape the policy to be implemented.
NUGS wishes to use this avenue to call for more involvement between the Government and NUGS in making this policy successful.
NUGS will also use this opportunity to call for the intervention of the Government in collaborating with the various managements of public institutions to put plans in place to solve issues of accommodation especially with the numbers that are expected to be in the universities as a result of the Free SHS Policy.
NUGS urges the Government to also pay close attention towards the development of youth and students of this country especially student leadership in order to provide the needed training and guidance for the students who wish to serve their country.
NUGS is committed to serving students of Ghana and we will continue to be firm and work in line with the directive principles ascribed in the constitution of the country.
Kobby Otchere Marfo
Press & Information Secretary, NUGS
Tinkaro Asare Osei