Tuesday, April 15, 2008

A revolution for Ghana’s schools

Why Ghana needs to change its education system:

1. The Education system is too European orientated.

2. The current education system teaches Ghanaians as a whole to become consumers rather than producers and creates a dependency culture.

3. The education system results in many of its products wanting to leave Ghana for the West.

4. The current education system tends to concentrate more on theory as opposed to practical application.

5. The current system of education does not equip the Ghanaian with the core skills that are imperative in the global context.

The writer, Dr. Kwame Osei, stops short of saying how this change will come about, but it’s an interesting argument, where he claims Ghana’s system sets the bar too low and produces a nation full of small scale shop keepers, while foreigners arrive to take all the “important” jobs in mining, manufacturing, banking, agriculture and tourism.

Osei suggests schools should better equip students in basic customer service skills, better numeric skills, typing skills, presentation and better understanding of the English language. Most importantly, graduates need to be better versed in analytical and problem solving skills.

Presently, 50 percent of Ghana’s children attend school. While that’s pretty OK for West Africa (Niger posts a 22 percent education rate), Ghana is in that strange position where putting more bodies in classrooms could actually damage the quality of education unless the government goes out and hires new teachers and upgrades facilities. Of course, developing some of the suggestions people like Dr. Osei have proposed would also be beneficial.

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