Mr Kwame Afram Denkyira, Programme Officer of ActionAid Ghana, Brong-Ahafo Region, has called on the Asutifi North and South district assemblies to strengthen efforts at reducing teenage pregnancy in the area.
He said available statistics indicated that 69 pregnant girls dropped out of school during the 2010/2011 academic year, 65 during 2011/2012 academic year and 73 during the 2012/2013 academic year.
Mr Denkyira made the call at an education forum jointly organised by the Asutifi District Parent Teacher Association network, ActionAid Ghana in collaboration with the Asutifi District Directorate of Education.
It was attended by traditional rulers, heads of department and opinion leaders among others to deliberate on finding solutions to factors affecting the standard of education in the 25 communities within the two districts.
The forum was on the theme: “Right to Quality Basic Education: A Collective Responsibility.”
On the Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE), Mr Denkyira said although there was remarkable improvement, the districts faced some challenges.
These included inadequate textbooks especially English Language, Mathematics, Science and other teaching and learning materials to enable the few teachers in the system to effectively discharge their duties.
Mr Denkyira said there was the need to invest in quality education for the youth to become useful citizens in future, because quality education was the key to economic productivity and political stability of any nation.
He called for trained teachers and teaching and learning materials to ensure meaningful teaching and learning in rural communities.
Reverend Maxwell Owusu-Acheaw, Vice Chairman of Asutifi North and South District PTA Network, said inadequate textbooks at the basic and junior high school levels were affecting the standard of education in the area.
He said a survey conducted in 36 schools revealed that some schools did not have a single textbook in English Language, Mathematics and Science, whilst in some schools the textbooks available were being used by the teachers.
“The ratio for students to textbooks at the JHS level is one textbook to five students and one textbook to two pupils at the basic level,” Mr Acheaw said.
Mr Acheaw said the 5,266 students at the JHS level had 2,425 textbooks in English Language, Mathematics and Science whilst the 2,744 pupils at the basic level had 2,463 textbooks in three subjects.
He urged parents who could afford the textbooks to purchase them for their children, particularly those at the JHS level, to study hard and pass their examination.
Mr Joseph Badu, Asutifi North District Director of Education said education was an investment which needed to produce good result and must, therefore, be the collective efforts of teachers, parents and stakeholders to ensure better education for the country’s future leaders.
He urged teachers to use school hours judiciously and prepare the pupils adequately to improve on their performance in their final examination. GNA