Double tracking system for SHS should be piloted – Prof Agyekum

BY: graphic.com.gh
Professor Kofi Agyekum
Professor Kofi Agyekum

The Head of the Department of Linguistics at the University of Ghana, Professor Kofi Agyekum says the double intake system for new entrants into public senior high schools (SHS) should be done on a pilot.

He says a lot of measures must be put in place to ensure that the programme becomes a success, adding that it can only be done on a pilot basis.

Prof. Agyekum stressed that through piloting, its challenges would be pinpointed and rectified before large scale implementation.

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo over the weekend said the policy will be implemented in September to address the growing numbers of students benefiting from the Free SHS policy.

But speaking on Accra based radio station, Peace FM’s Kokrokoo programme on Thursday; Prof. Agyekum said the timing was wrong.

He explained that unlike the western world where reading is inculcated in children, Ghanaian children do not like reading; hence it will be difficult for them to study on their own when they are asked to stay at home for three months under the policy.

He added that if care was not taking, the essence of the policy will be defeated since more children will come out of school without the requisite knowledge to move on.

Prof. Agyekum said teachers must also be trained on how to handle the children under the policy.

He further stated that for the meantime, government must focus on constructing more schools while consulting with stakeholders on how best the policy could be implemented.

What is the double tracking system?

In a single-track system, students and staff are in school or vacation at the same time within an academic year.

But the double-track system divides the entire student body and staff into two different tracks. So while one track is in school, the other is on vacation.

The rotation sequence will depend on the year-round calendar being used. In Ghana, the school calendar starts from September and ends in April with three different terms. The first term is from September to December; the second term starts in January and ends in April while the third term is from April/May to July.

Furthermore, every semester will be 80 days for the two tracks. For one semester, every track will be in school for 40 days then go for a break for 40 days.