Free SHS could face challenges – Fmr Population Council boss

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A former chairman of the National Population Council, Dr Andrew Arkutu, has said the current challenges facing the SHS placement clearly indicate that population data was not considered in the exercise.

He said until authorities make good use of population data in the school placement process the challenges will continue.

Speaking at a lecture organized by the Ghana Association of former International Civil Servants (GIFICS), Dr. Arkutu expressed regrets the placement of junior high school graduates into various SHS turned chaotic.

Dr. Arkutu noted that one of the major challenges in the education sector is accommodation hence the government should pay close attention to population data in relation to the existing infrastructure to determine the placement of the students.

“Available figures indicate that there are some 21,438 public basic schools, 8,850 Junior High Schools and 900 Senior High Schools (including private schools) in the country. If media reports are correct, there is a severe infrastructure deficit. Many existing schools, including many senior high schools, are in deplorable conditions. Over 7,400, representing 35% of public basic schools have no toilet facilities. The majority of Senior High Schools are overcrowded and their dormitories are completely full,” he said.

He emphasized that if planners took available population data into consideration, “many of the challenges faced on the first day of school this year, and the frustrations and distress that many Ghanaian families experienced could and should have been foreseen, and possibly, prevented.”

By Emmanuel Amewugah, Daily Mail GH

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