The government has announced a historic move to shoulder the entire cost of the fee for the West Africa Secondary School Certificate Examinations (WASSCE) for all final year candidates of Senior High Schools about to take the exams.
The cost of this sponsorship amounts to GHc75.4m and will cover about 300,000 candidates, President Nana Akufo-Addo said in his latest address to the nation Sunday.
He said the introduction of the Free SHS has seen about 1.2million students enrolled in various SHSs across the country, which makes it the highest population the country has recorded in its history.
“The policy has also ensured that 400,000 more students have entered school which they wouldn’t have gotten the opportunity without the policy,” he added.
The reopening of schools for selected students will see about 800,000 teachers, non-teachers and students in the over 1,000 SHSs across the country.
He said the government’s decision to invest the country’s resources into education is due to the fact that it is the youth of today who are going to develop Ghana, saying “without education, we can’t transform from a developing country to a developed country.”
President Akufo-Addo in his 10th address to the nation directed the reopening of schools for all final-year students, after a nearly three-month-long closure when the country recorded its first cases of the global coronavirus pandemic.
The decision, the president said, was taken “after engagement with the teacher unions to reopen schools and universities to allow for final-year Junior High, Senior High and university students to resume classes ahead of the conduct of their respective exit examinations.”
According to the directive, final-year university students are to report to their universities on June 15, final-year SHS students together with SHS 2 Gold Track students on June 22, and final-year JHS students on June 29.
However, the President directed that JHS 3 classes will comprise a maximum of 30 students, while SHS classes will have a maximum of 25 students. University lectures will take place with half the class size.