As part of collective commitment to ensure that every child is supported to access quality education, the leadership of Ghana National Council of Private Schools GNACOPS, is putting measures in place proactive measures to support private educational systems to adequately respond to the emerging demands of education. GNACOPS is set to develop policies and programmes that is focused on children in the private education sector, in ways that support them to access education to an appreciable level.
At the stakeholder engagement to discuss policies and plans to support all private schools children in Ghana On the 3rd of September, 2021, the national director for Research and training for Gnacops, Dr. Jectey-Nyarko Mantey revealed that, Ghana’s liberalization of the education sector has made the private sector contribute immensely to the national development agenda. He said, While the government of Ghana has played a significant role in the past decades in financing and promoting education, it has been heavily complemented by the private sector.
Dr. Mantey stated that, over the years, providing private education in Ghana has been in the form of church/mission schools, home schools and commercially-built private schools for both non-profit and profit purposes. He further stated that Private schools in Ghana have become a force to reckon with in terms of providing training and holistic education for the teaming infants, adolescents and adults in the primary, secondary and tertiary levels schools in Ghana. Their contributions therefore is a pivot to the development of education in the country.
The principal programmes officer from the Ministry of Education at the Pre-tertiary Directorate of the Ministry of Education, Mr.Isaac Atta Baah in his speech declared that, the Ministry of Education and other corporate organisations are highly aware of the active complimentary role played by private schools at all levels of education delivery in Ghana. The Ministry is therefore committed in engaging all stakeholders in the provision of education to discuss how their operations can be sustained to contributing to the private sector Pre-tertiary education in particular and the holistic education of the Ghanaian child in general. Of special interest is how to deliberate on effective ways the government and managers of private schools can contribute to the realization of goal 4 of the SDGs.
He praised private schools for the role being played and revealed that, the Report on Basic Statistics and Planning Parameters for Basic Education in Ghana 2015/2016 commissioned by the Ministry of Education indicates that 95% of Crèches in Ghana are owned by private entities, 54% of Kindergartens are privately owned, 32% privately owned primary schools and 32% of Junior High Schools are also privately owned (EMIS 2016).
Mr. Enoch Kwasi Gyetuah the National Executive Director of GNACOPS in his opening remarks noted that a research conducted by the Ghana national Council of Private Schools (GNACOPS in 2019, revealed that the total number of children in the pre-tertiary private institutions are over 2.3 million in about 5000 schools across the country. The enrolment in private school is significantly increasing as most parents look for the best of training and quality education for their children.
He was if the view that as the choice of School is not inhibited, most parents base their decisions on what the schools can offer in terms of quality education and holistic training to make their choice. A lot of parents sacrifice financially to enrol their children to private schools. It is obvious that, parent involvement is necessary for children’s learning, outcomes in school and their future goals.
He added that, among the numerous reasons why parent select a private school include teacher to student ratio, small class size, conducive learning environment, quality teaching delivery, disciplined environment, sense of security for their children, high moral standards as well as high opportunity to participate in extracurricular activities, even if there are not any academic advantages.
He therefore of the view that inasmuch as competitive education is essential for a better future parents should not to forget education, based on only examination and certification may not always guarantee a good career in today’s competitive job market.
Mr. Gyetuah emphased that, to achieve a high level quality education there should be pragmatic policies and practices which will make the educational system attractive to accessibility and equity devoid of all learning barriers. He disclosed that, this can be achieved only when the education system is governed by policies that guarantees the continuity and completion of child educational journey.
The demands of quality education in the 21st century teaching and learning arena, requires a contingent plan that is adequately prepared, motivated and assured to ameliorate all challenges associated with quality education. It is very essential to have a holistic discussion on how every child would be supported to have an unhindered access to quality education.
All indications point to the fact that the educational well-being of the Ghanaian child is as equally important as the infrastructure development of a nation. Educating a child today is an assurance of a great nation tomorrow. The opposite comes with its diverse consequences.
In the light of this, GNACOPS in partnership with Saham Life Insurance and Westom Insurance Brokers are championing policies to ensure that each and every Ghanaian child will have unhindered access to good and quality education regardless of their financial and psycho-social circumstance they find themselves. This will be in the form of well-meaning policy for paying fees as well as scholarship schemes where the need be.