Ghana Education Service (GES) says it is surprised over concerns raised with regards to the number of teachers and space for academic work following the resumption of school for final year students in the country.
Its Director-General, Prof. Kwasi Opoku -Amankwa says there is enough infrastructure as well as teaching staff to ensure the adherence of social distancing during the partial reopening of Junior and Senior High schools amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.
Many have questioned President Akufo-Addo’s directive on the reopening of schools for final year students and the guidelines announced thereof arguing that it seems impractical given the inadequacy of teachers, classroom and dormitory space to accommodate the large number of students who are expected to return to school for their final examinations.
Among the advisories is that class size for final year SHS students should not be more than 25 students and not more than 30 students in the case of Junior High Schools.
Additionally, all-day students in boarding schools will now be accommodated into the boarding house. Prof. Opoku Amankwa says the situation can be easily managed much more than the impossibility being anticipated.
“For our classes in secondary schools, it is about 50 to 60 students per class. So we are looking at half of that class. It shouldn’t go beyond 30 because we want to ensure that we have the minimum spacing in the classroom and dormitory. Now, they have all the dorms at their disposal. Now that we don’t have all the streams in there, it means we have enough space. As far as teachers are concerned, I think we have enough teachers to be doing this. We have teachers on the double track and those teaching form ones and twos who can always help to ensure that teaching and learning go on”, he told Bernard Avle on the Point of View on Citi TV.
The GES Director added that consultations are going to be held among stakeholders on the agreed measures to be adopted in dealing with challenges that may arise as a result of the new provisions.
“I am surprised at this because on average, we do 70-30 percent boarding and day for all our schools. So I will be very surprised that there will be a school without enough boarding facilities. When we meet the CHASS on Monday, we have requested that they bring the details of the number of teachers, students, classes and dormitories that they have -they are bringing all those details so that we work them out to see the permutations. Once we see the permutations and there are challenges with the numbers, we will think around it”, he assured.