To give you the understanding or topic you would want to educate yourself on, am breaking the story into subtitles that you can scroll through to get your relevant information.
Origin of free S.H.S
Free Education as enshrined in the 1992 constitution is the “brainchild” of the framers of the constitution who in their foresight knew must be progressive to ensure quality with quantity.
These people had a commitment to a future solid educational system. In article 25 it states education right from nursery to the university must be free for every school-going age Ghanaian. In fact (b) states specifically that “secondary education in its different forms including technical and vocational education, shall be made generally available and accessible to all by every appropriate means, and in particular, by the progressive introduction of free education”.
The implementer of free education/S.H.S
As the constitution prescribed that after ten (10) years of promulgating it, education right from nursery must be progressive, former President John Agyekum Kufour’s led government started implementing free education in 2002. He introduced the school feeding program as an intervention that was targeting to achieve this initiative of free universal basic education for all. This program did increase enrollment and attendants.
President John Atta Mills of blessed memory also continued from where Kuffour left and also began removing school under trees and abolishing the shift system among others.
Former President Mahama also knowing SHS to the university must be progressively free started the programme in October 2015 with day students by removing their school fees. It worth noting that the school fees are fees (tuition, library, etc) paid by both Day and Boarding students except boarding fees is is exclusively for students in the border house.
However former President Mahama in his 2014 State of Nation address hinted at the idea of a progressively free SHS. Bearing in mind why the framers of the constitution choose progressive introduction, Mahama introduced the progressively Free SHS which at the time covered over 300, 000 Day students for 2015/2016 academic year including students in Form 1 – 3 and promised to use our oil money to start free boarding for boarding students in 2017.
Read the link below to confirm from president Akuffo Addo’s Minister of education who implemented Progressively Free S.H.S
Akufo-Addo applauds Mahama for launching Free SHS
In an interview with an Accra-based Oman FM, on October 2015, then Mr. Akufo-Addo said “if the President and his National Democratic Congress (NDC) government [Mahama] now considers the free SHS education policy possible then it is good for Ghanaians.
”I see it as good news to Ghanaians; everything we[politicians] do is to improve the lives of and benefit Ghanaians. Its good news to all of us Ghanaians,” he reiterated…. Read here https://awakenewsroom.com/7yrs-ago-mahamas-free-shs-good-news-for-ghanaians-nana-addo/
What Mahama’s Free SHS encompasses
Mahama’s regime Progressively Free SHS covered all the tenants that our education system anchors on namely accessibility, affordability and quality.
Under Quality, he focused on more contact hours between teachers and students. Ensuring there were learning materials and labs available to students
Under accessibility, Mahama started the Community Day Senior High Schools popularly know us E-Blocks targeted at communities that didn’t have Senior High schools. However, as the time of arriving in school is important and also not subjecting students to walking longer distances before they get to school, Mahama provided all the Community Day schools (E – Blocks ) with a School Bus each that was to be used in the community to carry students to school and back home.
Under affordability, Mahama made available an amount of GHC 12,178,544.00 for the progressive free S.H.S program. Ghana education service at the time received funding and approval for the recruitment of 9,300 teachers for existing schools and the E – Blocks schools.
President Akuffo Addo’s Free education.
President Nana Akuffo Addo in 2017 announced his government was to implement a comprehensive universal Free SHS. Later, the intended wholly implementation of the Free SHS threw Ghanaians into shock as the was no policy document for it and government officials kept contradicting themselves on the source of funding and how to accommodate the huge number of students.
Subsequently, the government covered only First-year students which is progressive instead of their promise to implement it to cover all First, second, and third-year students. This wasn’t without the Warton challenges including lack of desks, classrooms among others. The government even sacked some Headteachers for lamenting of the woes that befell the policy.
Did people kick against Free SHS implementation?
The National Democratic Congress (NDC) before they implemented the Progressively Free SHS had always maintained that Quality is paramount to education. Therefore implementing the policy in a way that it will cover everything free-ranging from making Mattress, Chop Box, Trank, Exercise and Note Books including anything the student would need was not possible and might even collapse our economy at the time. Today from 2017 one must agree with them because the teething problem of increasing only the number of students still exists.
Revisiting history shows in drafting our constitution the lawyers association and the NPP which the current president Nana Akuffo Addo was part of at the time boycotted the drafting of the constitution that gave birth to Free SHS and said they could not sit with lesser associations like market women and others to draft a constitution, even though those “lesser groups” representative were graduates.
Read the link below to ascertain the facts
Dementia is a syndrome in which there is deterioration in memory, thinking, behaviour and the ability to perform everyday activities. Although dementia mainly affects older people, it is not a normal part of aging. Worldwide, around 50 million people have dementia, and there are nearly 10 million new cases every year. Alzheimer’s disease is the most common form of dementia and may contribute to 60–70% of cases. Dementia is one of the major causes of disability and dependency among older people worldwide.
With these facts above one can only settle on dementia as the cause of President Nana Akuffo-Addo assertion that he is of shock that President Mahama said he (Mahama) implemented Progressively Free S.H.S.
In conclusion, former President Mahama implemented Progressively Free S.H.S which President Nana Akuffo-Addo came to continue by increase the number of students and restricted all to Form one (1) which later covered Form 2 and 3 progressively.
Filed By : Agaatorne Douglas Asaah / awakenewsroom.com