Examination malpractice: Eduwatch commends GES for sanctioning staff

BY: Emmanuel Bonney
 Prof Kwasi Opoku-Amankwa — Director-General, GES
Prof Kwasi Opoku-Amankwa — Director-General, GES

Africa Education Watch (Eduwatch), an advocacy organisation, has commended the Ghana Education Service (GES) for dismissing staff who were involved in examination malpractices during the 2020 West Africa Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) and the Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE).

It said the move was a bold statement of zero tolerance for teachers’ involvement in examination malpractices.

“Our review of the performance of the Education Sector in 2021 indicates that the MoE made significant gains towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goal Four targets that require consolidation, while addressing critical areas of policy deficits,” a New Year’s message from Eduwatch said.

Teacher rationalisation

In 2021, it said about 44,000 teachers (over 15%) left the basic school system with no replacements and that while the ongoing efforts to recruit some 16,000 teachers was commendable, it did not address the deficit half-way.

The Ministry of Education, it said, must ensure the posting of all newly recruited teachers to deprived districts where they were needed, devoid of any protocol considerations.

In addition, it said the many districts with surplus teachers should be decongested and teachers reposted to empty classrooms in deprived districts where they are most needed.

“Eduwatch’s foremost priority for 2022 is to support the MoE by monitoring teacher postings and teacher deployment in general, in line with the Minister’s vision of one teacher per classroom. Our ‘Every Child Deserves a Teacher’ Campaign will be launched later this month,” it said.

Standard Based Curriculum

The message, among other things, said the first two years of implementing the Standard Based Curriculum (SBC) had not been the best due to the lack of textbooks and the myriad of planning deficits surrounding the roll-out of the Junior High School (JHS) Curriculum I.E., Common Core Programme (CCP).

To rewrite this script, Eduwatch indicated that the ministry must streamline communication on timelines for rolling out the SBC in JHS and SHS to enable proper planning; make textbooks available to all kindergartens and primary schools this term; train teachers in the CCP before roll-out this term and provide textbooks for the CCP in the 2022 academic year.