[ 2012-04-26 ]
Prof. Stephen Addae
Blame teachers for poor BECE results - Prof Addae
Former Rector of the Ghana Institute of Management
and Public Administration (GIMPA), Professor
Stephen Addae has blamed teachers at the basic
school level for the poor performance of pupils,
insisting that they should be held responsible for
the poor results of their work.
The professor - speaking on Joy FM’s Super Morning
Show Wednesday - stated that basic school
teachers, though highly trained fail to honour
their duty meticulously.
According to him, teachers spend less time
teaching and added that in cases when they do the
process lacks quality.
Comparing the quality of public basic school
tutoring to that of private basic schools, Prof.
Addae said teachers should be able to teach
‘normal’ children to read and write within two
years even with limited teaching and learning
materials like chalk and blackboard.
He said research has shown that pupils from
private schools perform better than their
colleagues in public schools even though they are
taught by less trained teachers who are also
“The teachers are not doing their job. It’s as
simple as that and nobody is holding them
responsible. On the contrary…every now and then
they want to hold the government hostage.”
Again, the former rector observed that public
school teachers lack the discipline to be
punctual, quoting a report by UNESCO that on the
average Ghanaian teachers absent themselves –
apart from public holidays – 43 days in a year.
The teachers, he said, fail to perform not
necessarily because they are not paid well by
government, maintaining that teachers at
pre-secondary levels must be properly monitored to
ensure they are doing the job as expected.
“If they think the teaching is not good they
should leave but once they are there (they should
be committed to the jobs).”
Prof Addae also spoke on other aspects of the
education system as well as the economy.
Free SHS education
According to him, Ghana is capable of providing
free Senior High School (SHS) education to all
children. However, he said the issue must be
depoliticized in order to find ways of making that
Flag-bearer of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Nana
Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo proposal to make SHS
education free when voted as president was greeted
with sharp criticisms and arguments challenging
the feasibility of such project.
Vice President John Dramani Mahama who is opposed
the idea has also announced government’s intention
to construct an extra 200 community day SHS in
each district in the country.
But Prof Addae, who believes that access to SHS
education and quality are evenly dependent, said
“we cannot choose to improve quality before we
think of access, it is not an either or
“I believe that within a certain time frame free
education for every child to secondary level is
The focus he said should be on how to make that
possible. For example, he said about six percent
of the nation’s GDP could be tapped into the
implementation of the project. Again, he said the
tax system could be reviewed so the rich are taxed
more. That along with proceeds from the nation’s
oil will ensure free SHS is be achieved, he
Moreover, the former rector pointed out that
Ghanaians should not expect that all children will
be trained under the boarding school systems,
highlighting that even richer economies like the
United States do not train all their children in
Prof Addae criticized what he termed “the old 1960
mentality guarding the 21 century Educational
system” which he said has a resulted in the poor
education standards in the country. He maintained
it was time to incorporate ICT's in tertiary
education so that students will have access to
labs and online libraries.
“Because now, you can have the same library as
Oxford University, as Harvard University (while)
sitting in your home. These are the types of
things we should be looking at and not the
restriction of the numbers…but how we can improve
Biometric registration exercise
He was not surprised at the violence that has
characterized the exercise but was appalled by the
level of acrimony which he described as alarming
and shameful. Prof Addae was particularly
concerned about what he said were attempts by
politicians to undermine public institutions like
the police service and judiciary, saying it was a
dangerous trend creeping into the nation’s
“Yes there have been lapses but they do not
warrant politicians undermining them.”
Faults media for political tension
As far as he was concerned, the media is to blame
for the heightened tension in Ghana’s politics
because they publicize ‘unguarded statements’ by
politicians and invite people from opposing sides
to comment on those issues.
He said he was happy that neither President Mills
nor Nana Addo have remarked about the Ken Agyapong
incident and hoped that when the two leaders do
they will take non partisan positions.
Economics and good governance
In a general sense, Prof Addae said the economy
has seen much growth. He was optimistic that
unlike other countries that have had oil but
couldn’t improve the livelihoods of the majority
of their citizens Ghana will be different .
However he was worried that there was no specific
agenda to improve the lives of Ghanaians.
“At this moment I don’t see any strategic
framework for this nation; therefore you can have
a temporary advantage and still no hope. And
that’s what is making many Ghanaians frustrated. I
think that people are willing to endure short-term
hardship when they have a clear agenda and hope.
“There is Better Ghana (Agenda), yes every day we
must be better but better towards what? We need
specific agenda and to work towards it…”
Source - MyjoyOnline
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