A spelling competition has been launched among the public schools in Accra to enhance literacy in the country.
The competition, organised by Milky Way Book and Fan Club, a subsidiary of Advert Tyme Group Limited (ATGL), focuses on upper primary schools and aims to improve on the use of the English Language, promote the habit of reading and help students to excel in their Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE).
In an interview with the Daily Graphic last Friday in Accra, the Managing Director of ATGL, Mr Ulyses Amoako, said many pupils in the public schools could not read and write and that the situation must be addressed.
He pointed out that reading and writing was the basics of learning and to address such problems, therefore, there was the need to start the spelling competition.
"Most of the spelling competitions are focused on the private schools, but this is centred on public schools even though we have some private schools on board," he said.
Explaining some of the mechanisms used to get the right pupils for the competition, he noted that in some of the competitions, some teachers selected students based on favouritism so they randomly selected 20 pupils from the schools and conducted a dictation to make their selection.
"After doing this, we go to the zonal, regional and national levels to get the winner. This will encourage and build the confidence of most students at the basic level in the public schools," Mr Amoako mentioned.
Commenting on the awards, he pointed out that the winner would take GH¢500, an Oxford dictionary, books and souvenirs from the company while the second person would take GH¢300, with the third taking an Oxford dictionary, books, souvenirs and GH¢150, an Oxford dictionary, books and souvenirs would be the prizes for the third person.
"Currently we need to have sponsors so as time goes on, we will review the awards based on the funds we get, therefore, I call on corporate bodies to sponsor to promote quality education in the country,” he appealed.
Mr Amoako urged the government to assist companies and civil societies that make efforts to promote quality education in the country but do not have adequate funds.
The Head Teacher of Omanjor MA JHS, Mrs Clothilda Abalansa, lauded the initiative and encouraged other public schools to get involved.
"This competition has never happened in the school before and l believe it will help the students to improve on their reading because most of them cannot read," she said.
She indicated that reading had become a major challenge and it was not always the responsibility for only the government but also individuals and stakeholders in education, including teachers, had a role to play in promoting quality education in the country.
Mrs Abalansa mentioned that the public schools needed a lot of reading books and with committed teachers, they could impact the pupils better.
She advised parents to ensure their children read their books at home rather than watching television.
Milky Way Book and Fan Club, a subsidiary of AGTL, was launched on April 22, 2017, to organise seminars and workshops for both students and teachers to promote quality education in the country.
AGTL was established on May 21, 2016 as a new media and publishing firm registered under the National Media Commission (NMC).