Mrs. Catherine Nutsuga-Mikado, incoming Head of the National Girl Child Education Directorate of the Ghana Education Service (GES) has bemoaned the high level of parental irresponsibility in the country. She said this contributed to the high dropout rate of girls, especially from schools in the Akatsi North District, where she had just ended her duty tour as the first District Director of Education. Mrs Nutsuga-Mikadowas addressing an educational forum by the Parliamentary Select Committee on Education (PSCE) at Ave-Dakpa in the Akatsi-North district, as part of its national exercise to find and tackle challenges facing education delivery.
Personnel in Education, the Assembly, teachers, local school management teams, pupils, parents and traditional authorities participated. Stakeholder performance and responsibility shortfalls, overcrowding, resource constraints, attitudinal inhibitions, including community hostility to the teacher and the road map to improvements, formed part of issues examined. There is high level of child labour and neglect of kids to fend for themselves and it is affecting retention of girls in particular, Mrs. Nutsuga-Mikado stated. Mrs. Nutsuga-Mikado, also a former Volta Regional Girl Child Education Officer, also admonished teachers to refrain from refusing rural postings, saying rural kids are also Ghanaian children.
She said through frantic efforts, the education directorate, the Assembly and Member of Parliament (MP) had facilitated improvement in the BECE results this year. Mrs. Nutsuga-Mikadosaid in view of the growing awareness about the importance of education, pupil population had risen from 5,086 in 2013 to 8,136 this year with some class sizes as high as 121 at the Kindergarten level and 110 at the JHS level instead of 35. Mr PeterNortsu-Kotoe, MP for the area and PSCE Vice-Chairman, who donated 500 lesson notes, 500 class registers and 1,000 flat file to the area, appealed to donors to assist the Assembly in its educational challenges.
He said problems such as teacher accommodation were beyond the scope of the infant Assembly for now. Pupils during their group work accused teachers of idling on their cellular phones for long periods neglecting teaching, while parents admitted their irresponsibility in childcare. Mr. Puozaa Mathias Asoma, PSCE Chairman asked the five-member road map oversight committee, formed as part of the project, to work hard, saying they would be called to give account on their efforts before the PSCE in Accra.
Mr. James Gunu, District Chief Executive (DCE), reiterating his outfits resolve to support education in the area, announced that the number of teacher trainees sponsored would be increased.