Mr Emmanuel Ketteku, the Volta Regional Director of Education, has said going by the corporate world’s measure, many basic schools in the Volta Region could be shut down for consistently performing below the bottom-line.
He said there existed a horrendous gap between investment in the form of pay for teachers and performance that would confound any analyst.
Mr Ketteku was addressing an education forum organized by the Volta Regional Catholic Education Unit to share ideas on best practices, models and success stories which could be replicated to improve education management at all levels.
The basis of the Volta Regional Education Director’s comment was the consistent slump in performance at the Basic Schools for the past four year in the Region.
Mr Ketteku said in the 2011-2012 Basic Education Certificate Examination, (BECE), the region got 27.9 percent against the national average of 69 percent and was “third from the bottom” among the 10 regions.
He warned that the numerous young people taken out of the education process because of the non-performance of some public sector school teachers could become disillusioned and thus susceptible to the lures of criminal gangs.
“If we don’t wake up as a Region, there will be big, big, trouble for us,” Mr Ketteku said and lauded the Catholic Education Unit for bringing up the idea of a forum like this to think up solutions.
Asked if he was not being hypercritical of teachers, Mr Ketteku said he was speaking the truth “and that is what I have been doing these past weeks,” suffering backlashes here and there.
“The irony I dare say is that the qualified teachers send their children to private schools to be taught by pupil teachers,” he said.
Mr Ketteku said it was not uncommon to find teachers resting under trees while their pupils frolicked for the greater part of contact hours.
On supervision, he said, governments had not been forthcoming with the resources for the officers to operate effectively.
Mr Raphael Kwashie, Regional Manager of the Catholic Education Unit, said the Unit was doing better than others but conceded there was the need for all players in the education sector to come together to salvage the region from poor educational performance.
He said the forum was a “peer-learning session, a departure from the usual ‘talk shows,’ where lofty principles are espoused but which are left on the shelves only to gather dust.”
Mr Kwashie said as education managers they had the ideas and innovations that had been tried and worked and that “we are here to share these innovations and creativity”.
The forum was presented with two success stories one of which was at Kpando Aloryi Boys’ Junior High School which had zero percent consecutively for three years but had 100 percent in the 2011-2012 BECE exams.
Community offers of free breakfast and lunch for pupils and extra-tutoring, bills picked by the community, combined with other measures turned the table. GNA