About 24,000 out-of-school children have been enrolled under the Complementary Basic Education programme (CBE) in the Brong Ahafo and three northern regions for them to benefit from formal education.
Meanwhile, the government is working to extend the programme to the remaining regions to bring 120,000 children on board the formal school system in the next three years.
The CBE programme is an initiative of the government to ensure that children who are out of school benefit from formal education. The Vice-President, Mr Kwesi Bekoe Amissah-Arthur, who was speaking in Accra yesterday said, “These are clear manifestations of the government’s commitment to make basic education accessible to all children, no matter their age and location.”
He was speaking at a ceremony where he presented the President’s Independence Day Award to winners at the Banquet Hall of the State House.
Twenty students selected from the 10 regions were awarded scholarships for their excellent performance in the Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE).
The scholarship package for each award winner included GH¢700, Nestle products for the next one year and a Samsung tablet. The Vice-President said in line with the government’s commitment to ensure that learners developed competence in the use of modern technology, it had distributed 600,000 laptops to 25,000 basic schools across the country. Furthermore, 10,000 basic school teachers have been trained in the use of computers for teaching.
On the government’s programme to establish 200 community schools, Mr Amissah-Arthur said procurement processes had begun for the construction of the second batch of 50 community senior high schools (SHSs). The first 50 schools were awarded on contract last year.
The Secondary Education Improvement Project, being funded by the World Bank, will provide an additional 23 new SHSs with a full complement of staff housing, technical blocks and school canteen.
On training for teachers, Mr Amissah-Arthur said that 2,000 teachers would benefit from re-training while 10,400 needy students would be given scholarships, with emphasis on girls.
The Vice-President congratulated the students for their excellence and advised them to appreciate the role their parents, teachers and friends played in nurturing them. He further advised them to shun drugs, occultism and other vices.
The Minister of Education, Professor Naana Jane Opoku-Agymang, said about 400 students had benefited from the award scheme since it was instituted in 1993.
She remarked that the ministry’s focus was on high performance, especially at the pre-tertiary level and, therefore, efforts were being made to provide textbooks and school uniforms to students to enhance their academic studies.
She added that more Mathematics and Science teachers were being trained to help improve on Science and Mathematics education.
The Business Executive Manager of Nestle in charge of West and Central Africa, Mr Daniel Yapoli, sponsors of the award, said the company had committed itself to the development of education and sports in Ghana.
As a manifestation of that commitment, he said Nestle had invested in the construction of schools and ICT centres in some cocoa farming communities to support education delivery.