The Parent-Teacher Association (PTA) of the Breman Asikuma Senior High School (BASS) has for the past five years initiated and executed major projects aimed at adding to the infrastructure of the school.
The provision of the projects, described as timely is to address not all, but some of the pressing infrastructural needs of the school and to augment the efforts of the government and old students towards the growth and development of BASS.
BASS which is arguably the best second cycle institution among the three senior high schools in the Asikuma-Odoben-Brakwa District in the Central Region, just like any other SHS in the country is faced with a myriad challenges in its quest to provide quality education to students.
The school is confronted with challenges such as inadequate classrooms and dormitories, inadequate staff accommodation, the lack of an assembly and dining halls, as well as poor road infrastructure.
Though successive governments over the years have done their part to improve upon the learning environment and facilities in the school, still more needs to be done to enable BASS re-position itself and compete with first class schools.
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The old students of the school, realising the need to also contribute their quota to the progress of the school, have not relented in their efforts to significantly contribute to the school’s development.
Assumption of office
Mr Eric Owusu-Appiah, the Chairman of the Parents Teacher Association (PTA), after assuming office on June 14, 2013, together with the other executives resolved to undertake transform the school by the construction of key projects.
As an old student of the school who completed in 1993, the PTA Chairman spearheaded the drive to improve upon the school’s infrastructure, a legacy that can be built upon by future PTA of the school.
As a result of his passion and commitment to see to the progress of BASS, the PTA in collaboration with the Methodist Church Ghana, have constructed an NHIS accredited clinic in the school to take care of the health needs of the school pupils.
He stressed: ‘undoubtedly the construction of the clinic has been a big relief to the school, since its establishment has led to the provision of urgent health services to staff and the students as well,” he told the Daily Graphic in an interview.
Hither to, students who got sick were transported to the Our Lady of Grace Catholic Hospital to receive medical attention due to the location of the school, which is a bit far from the town.
“Now, the provision of quality health care services have been brought to the doorstep of the students,” he said.
Solar powered ICT laboratory
He noted that in the current Information and Communications Technology (ICT) world, the school could not boast of a functional laboratory to enhance the teaching of those skills to students and and as a result the association from its resources had provided a 50-seater solar powered and ICT laboratory to enable the students put into practice the what they learnt.
He added that the PTA realised how important ICT was for the students and, therefore, decided to engage an ICT teacher who is paid monthly by the PTA to beef up the number of teachers teaching the subject in the school.
Also, three additional teachers for Mathematics, Physics and General Knowledge in Arts (GKA) have been engaged by the PTA to teach the students for them to improve upon their performance
Extension of girls’ dormitory
According to him, another major challenge faced by the school is inadequate dormitories for both boys and girls.
The PTA taking note of the fact that only few girls were admitted as boarders had decided to convert an old dining hall into a girls dormitory and extend it as well to give accomodation to more girls.
He explained the move was against the backdrop of girls staying out of campus and journeying to school daily with its attendant consequences.
The PTA had therefore thought it wise to undertake the project to keep more of the girls within the corridors of the school.
Nine-unit classroom block
In 2014, the PTA after studying the annual increase in the student population resolved to construct a nine-unit two storey classroom block from its funds to enable management of the school to get additional classrooms to accommodate the students.
The project which has been completed and is yet to be officially handed over has also been stocked with 540 desks and accommodates all the first year senior high school students.
Mr Owusu- Appiah, who is also the Gomoa District Scheme Manager of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) pointed out that the great vision of the PTA that gave birth to the new classroom block, has ultimately reduced congestion in the classrooms.
He said the PTA had also renovated the juniors, seniors and home economics blocks by changing the louvre blades, nets, electrical installation and the replacement of the spoilt ceiling, as well as the painting of the entire block.
A generator for classrooms in case of power outages had also been provided by the PTA to enable students study in the evening.
The PTA Chairman said that as part of plans, the associaiton would a construct a boy’s dormitory expected to accommodate 500 male boarders in order to reduce the rate at which the boys commuted daily to school.
Again, he disclosed that the PTA from its funds would also construct bungalows to house some of the teachers to help maintain discipline in the school.
PTA interventions commendable
For his part, Mr James Bambel, the headmaster of the school, thanked the PTA for executing the projects to complement the efforts of the government and the old students.
He appealed to the Ghana Education Trust Fund (GET fund) to release funds for the completion of a six unit staff accommodation started in 2004, saying that the school needed other facilities such as an assembly hall, dining hall, dormitories and classroom blocks.
The Breman Asikuma Senior High School, popularly referred to as ‘Beautiful BASS’ is located on an 88 acre land.
It was established in 1964 as a joint venture between the Breman Traditional Council headed by the then Omanhene, Odeefuo Amoakwa Buadu VI and the Very Rev, Felix Mensah, a Superintendent Minister of the Breman Asikuma Circuit of the Methodist Church Ghana.
The school was absorbed into the public education system in 1965 and currently has 84 teaching staff and a student population of 2,500.
It runs programmes such as General Arts, General Science, Business, Home Economics and Agricultural Science.