Catherina Appiah-Pinkrah (inset),  Executive Director of CEA, addressing the workshop
Catherina Appiah-Pinkrah (inset), Executive Director of CEA, addressing the workshop

Providing alternative learning opportunities: Complementary Education Agency to leverage collaboration

The Complementary Education Agency (CEA), an agency under the Ministry of Education, has said it will explore all opportunities to enable it to realise its mandate of providing quality alternative learning opportunities outside formal education and training.


That, it said, would help fill the education gap created in the past and would also ensure that the plan of not leaving any child behind was carried through. The CEA, formally the non-formal education unit, was given the legal backing when in 2019, Parliament passed the Complementary Education Bill into an Act (Act 1055) and it received the Presidential assent in December 2020.

It has been redesignated to deliver complementary basic education, remedial education programmes, occupational skill development and national functional literacy programmes.

The Executive Director of the CEA, Catherina Appiah-Pinkrah, said to be able to effectively implement its mandate, the agency was seeking to leverage all collaborative efforts to break down barriers and create avenues for learning, which cater for the needs of the out-of-school, thereby contributing to raising 21st Century educated Ghanaians.

In an interview with the Daily Graphic, after addressing volunteer teachers who have signed up to train the youth in their communities in employable skills, the CEA Executive Director said it was important for the youth who circumstances may have made them miss out on education, to acquire skills that will make them financially independent.

Ubuntu Coaching

The training workshop, dubbed: the Ubuntu Equip Coaching programme, was organised by a non-governmental organisation (NGO), Soccer for Dreamers, through its Ubuntu Online Academy initiative, with support from FBN Bank and Fidelity Bank Ghana.

The workshop

The workshop

It was aimed at enhancing the capacity of the 90 teachers who have signed up, to be able to effectively train the students and trainees who signed up for the programme. The participants were drawn from the first cycle, second cycle and tertiary levels.

Out-of-school youth

Mrs Appiah-Pinkrah said with the Act, the agency had been given the responsibility to deliver complementary basic education (CBE), remedial education programme (REP), occupational skills development (OSD) and national functional literacy (NFL) programmes.

She said while formal education had now been structured to prepare students well for the complexities of the modern world, with the curriculum focusing on the four Cs – critical thinking, creativity, collaboration and communication, the CBE focuses on out-of-school children aged eight to 16 years, the REP is for junior and senior high school dropouts, offering them an opportunity to re-sit their exams.

“In other words, the Agency has officially assumed the onerous responsibility for all out-of-school programmes at the Ministry of Education,” she emphasised. Mrs Appiah-Pinkrah said the agency understood that education was not just imparting knowledge, but nurturing the next generation of leaders and equipping them with skills and was thus seeking to collaborate with organisations to make education accessible, equitable and inclusive for all in Ghana.

“We at the agency understand that education is not just about imparting knowledge, but about nurturing the next generations of leaders, equipping them with skills and confidence they need to navigate an ever-changing world,” she said

The CEA Executive Director thus commended the Ubuntu Equip Coaching programme for its shared vision, saying the programme would help address the practical leadership and personal development needs among Ghanaian youth, just as the new curriculum for education sought to do.

She said through the collaborative effort with the Ubuntu Equip Coaching programme, the CEA could extend its reach and impact, “reaching more youth and empowering them with the essential skills and qualities they need to thrive”. 


Explaining the rationale for the initiative, the President of Soccer for Dreamers, Sylvia Akwaboah, said the Ubuntu Equip Coaching programme represented a groundbreaking initiative, providing a transformative and free educational experience for all schools in Ghana, from primary to tertiary levels.

“This programme is part of our ongoing mission to impact the lives of young individuals in Ghana positively and we believe your involvement would contribute immensely to the success of this initiative,” she said.

Mrs Akwaboah also welcomed any kind of collaboration with the CEA and other organisations to make the project successful and sustainable.

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