The Deputy Minister for Education has described as alarming the number of students who are unable to get admission into tertiary cycle institutions across the country.
Dr. Yaw Osei Adutwum said the persistent poor performance of the students in the West Africa Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) speaks ill of Ghana’s education system, an indication that new reforms must be put in place.
Speaking at the 2018 Educational Summit in Accra, the deputy minister reiterated government’s commitment to relentlessly put structures in place to ensure an improvement in the situation.
“When you have a system where only about 30 percent of your students can move on from secondary to tertiary something needs to change. 70 percent of our students cannot move on to universities and teacher education institutions even if they wanted to. There is something that needs to be done,” he noted.
He further indicated that in order to keep track of the performance of students and improve their academic stand, some interventions were underway to establish a national assessment of students at the various levels of education in the country to bring the educational vision of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) to life.
“We need to begin to create a pipeline from KG to secondary, but we cannot create that pipeline if you don’t have a national assessment. Beginning next year, we are looking at a national assessment which will give us the opportunity to begin to look at how the students are doing.”
In 2016, the then presidential candidate of the NPP, Nana Akufo-Addo criticized the Mahama administration after more than half of the candidates who sat for WASSCE failed.
The results showed that the students failed in the core subjects that is Mathematics, English, science and social studies.
About 32 percent of the students obtained the pass grade of A to C6 in the core subjects and 19.82 percent of students obtained D7-E8 which most tertiary institutions consider a fail score. Also, 38.10 percent of the students who took the exams that year had F9.
Upon assuming office in 2017, President Akufo-Addo pledged to put in place a number of policies to improve the educational sector, the major being the rollout of the Free SHS programme.
The ministry has also warned that basic and second cycle school heads who record 90 percent or more failure in their final exams will be sacked.
Government through the ministry and the Ghana education service has subsequently promised to give all schools the needed support to raise academic level nationwide.
The 2018 Educational Summit was under the theme “Bridging the gap between secondary and university education in Ghana: The Role of Stakeholders”.