The Ghana Education Trust Fund (GETFUND) has for the past two years spent GHC61.048 to support infrastructure development in all 38 Colleges of Education in the country.
Mr Stephen Baffoe, Public Relation Manager of the GETFUND, who disclosed this at the weekend, said the fund had also spent GHC2.18 million on faculty development.
He was speaking at the 4th graduation ceremony of St. Joseph’s College of Education (JOSCO) at Bechem in Tano South District of Brong-Ahafo Region.
Diplomas were conferred on 449 graduates, made up of 224 regular and 275 sandwich students, who pursued a two-year diploma courses in basic education programme.
The ceremony was under the theme “Colleges of education in tertiary environment, the responsibilities of stakeholders”.
Mr Baffoe said now that Parliament had passed the colleges of education Act, which was awaiting Presidential assent, there was an urgent need for all stakeholders to join hands to ensure that the visions in Act 778 were achieved.
He said the Ministry of Education, as the principal stakeholder, was required to draw policies to guide the work of the National Council for Tertiary Education, under whose supervision tertiary educational institutions operate.
Mr Baffoe observed that colleges of education would require financial resources far more than what the GETFUND was able to provide on annual basis and it was incumbent on other stakeholders to rake in more financial resources to complement the Fund’s support.
He said the role the council and management of the college played in attracting, recruitment and retention of quality staff both at the faculty level and also the administrative level could not be overemphasized.
Mr Baffoe urged, especially principals of the colleges, to look critically at how they utilized their colleges’ shares of the faculty development fund from the GETFUND.
He advised the graduates to build useful networks through which they could mobilize resources to complement the development of their alma mater.
Mrs. Cecilia Quansah, Principal of the college, said the college established in 1948 with 24 male students and three staff now had 831 students and 45 academic staff.
She explained that the college, being a Science, Technical and Mathematics one, intends to increase intake for these programmes to about 70 percent and the remaining 30 percent to the general programme this academic year.
Mrs Quansah said the premium was being placed on female students who would offer Mathematics and Science programmes, as the institution sought support to put up an ultra modern female hall of residence capable of accommodating 300 or more students.
She said the eight-unit block of flats for staff being put up with GETFUND budgetary allocations was still ongoing and appealed to individuals and corporate institutions to support the college’s computer, science and library facilities.
Most Reverend Peter K. Atuahene, Catholic Bishop of Goaso Diocese and Chairman of the College Council advised the graduates to accept postings to serve in rural communities.
He asked them to be disciplined and work in tandem with the ethics of the teaching profession so their students would pass well.
Professor Domwin Dabire Kuupole, Pro-Vice Chancellor of the University of Cape Coast who conferred the diploma degrees on the graduates entreated them to work hard and consider pursuing higher academic heights. GNA