Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Education: A view from Ghana

Africa is a continent with very little respect for education. It is estimated that at every point in time only about 6 percent of the people living on this continent have a post-high school certification of some sort. What bothers my mind the most is the attitude of the powers that be towards such matters of serious concern. They treat issues relating to education with a pinch of salt. In Ghana for instance the very pillars built to serve as public universities are the same which stand even today.

The biggest problem facing Africa undoubtedly is education. This I guess is not a matter of opinion but of fact. All other problems that face us and seem to be bigger than education can be resolved as soon as the primary problem of education is nipped in the bud.

I would like to draw your mind to a silent killing phenomenon which seems to be Ghana's dilemma although we hardly pay attention to it. I am talking about a cycle which always ensures that the best of students enter into University and the next level of students enter polytechnic.The third level of students find themselves in training colleges either as teacher trainees or as nurse trainees.

If we took the time to closely evaluate the calibre of entrants into the training colleges,we would realise that most (not all) of these students could not obtain high grades in English and Maths. These are the very people who will one day come out of such institutions to teach our kids English or Mathematics. My question is Why open up teacher training institutions for them, just because they did not obtain the necessary qualifications for into the University or Polytechnics ? I believe the willingness to teach should be a matter of choice and interest and nothing else.

I am looking forward to seeing a day when the best of students from our high schools would love to go into teacher training colleges to become tomorrow's teachers for our kids to benefit from their knowledge.

Next time you go into a government hospital and you do not get the best of treatment from the nurses..............think again probably she is not there because of interest rather she was pushed into nursing.

1 comment:

Esi W. Cleland said...

It's a shame that generally people with good grades do not opt to become teachers, but understandable when you consider the salary and benefits that teachers in Ghana get. There is little incentive to become teachers, even for those who may have otherwise been interested. I guess it's a vicious cycle.