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Public second-cycle institutions warned against charging unapproved fees

BY: Samuel K. Obour

Prof. Jane Naana Opoku-AgyemangThe Minister of Education, Pro.f Naana Jane Opoku Agyeman, has asked heads of public second cycle institutions to stop the practice of charging fees without reference to the Ghana Education Service (GES) guidelines and approval.

Such unapproved fees fall outside the fees that appear on the students’ bill and placed a heavy financial burden on both parents and students, she stated.

“It is difficult to imagine how many of us would have had secondary education had we studied under the circumstances that we have created, obliging students to carry cash to motivate teachers”, she stated.

Speaking at the 51st annual Conference of Heads of Assisted Secondary Schools (CHASS) at Oyoko, near Koforidua, on Tuesday, Prof. Opoku Agyeman stated that, “The present circumstance is also giving schools the advantage to levy students dues for the purchase of all manner of items”.

The five-day event is being held on the theme; “Pre-tertiary educational policies in Ghana: The past, the present and the future”.

She urged heads of secondary schools to place more emphasis on accurate utilisation of school time.

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“Let us not imagine it was easier for those teachers who taught us; they put us first and we can do the same”, Prof. Opoku Agyeman told the heads of schools.

She also said her outfit was working hard to ensure the timely release of funds to schools, and called for the cooperation of institutions to curtail unapproved fees charged by the heads of educational institutions.

“No one is looking forward to heads of schools being sanctioned for non-compliance”, she added.

According to her, she had set up a committee which would come out with a standardised fee structure that  would be published soon.

The National President of CHASS, Mr Samuel Ofori-Adjei, appealed to the government to release on time, subsidies and feeding grants to all senior high schools that benefit from the package.

“We have only four days for the academic year to end and we hope that the government will release the last tranche of this academic year’s subsidies”, he said.

The Rector of the Koforidua Polytechnic, Prof. Reynolds Okai, stated that the West Africa Examination Council had released the WASSCE results for the three and four year groups of senior high school students.

He, therefore, appealed to CHASS and all stakeholders to conduct empirical research and analyse their data to ascertain if there was significant difference in performance between the two groups of students.

“Further research should be conducted based on the research findings to determine the factors accounting for the observed findings or result”, he said.

By Nana Konadu Agyeman/Daily Graphic/Ghana