Convert dormitories into classrooms to resolve free SHS challenges — Kofi Akpaloo

BY: Daily Graphic
 Kofi Akpaloo — Founder of the Liberal Party of Ghana
Kofi Akpaloo — Founder of the Liberal Party of Ghana

The Founder of the Liberal Party of Ghana (LPG), Kofi Akpaloo, has asked the government to convert dormitories into classrooms to create space in senior high schools (SHSs) for the admission of more students.

His proposal follows the introduction of the double- track system by the government to create more space for students benefitting from the free SHS policy.

The system has already taken off in about 400 out of the 696 schools across the country. 

The government has explained that the move is to ensure that no qualified child is left out of the free SHS programme due to infrastructure challenges.

Resolving space challenges

But the leader and founder of the LPG party believes converting dormitories into classrooms will resolve the current space challenges.

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He said: “Our proposal is simple. Convert all existing dormitories into classrooms.

We have to accommodate all the children in school at once. We don’t need to keep some in school and some at home.

To me, it doesn’t make sense because we haven’t thought about the long-term effect this will bring.

If we are able to convert all the dormitories into classrooms, we will be able to accommodate every child in school, most especially schools in the urban areas”.

Free SHS not bad but...

Mr Akpaloo has also downplayed concerns that the free SHS policy was rushed through by the current government.

He noted: “The policy isn’t bad at all. The implementation is where we are having problems and anytime you try to implement something new, definitely you are bound to meet these problems, so it is not new.”

He added: “We don’t have anything against the policy itself, but the implementation, and we have to suggest ways we should all go so it can help the nation, because it’s about the nation, it’s not about any political party”.

On future plans to absorb the free SHS graduates into the tertiary institutions, Mr Akpaloo urged the government to start investing in the expansion of public tertiary institutions ahead of their graduation.

“We are putting more children in school.

Definitely they have to graduate from SHS and go to the university and polytechnics.

How prepared are we to absorb these children when they graduate from SHS? We should also look at that.

All that requires money, so we should find money to invest in that area as well,” he stated.