Quality education key to national development – Professor Yankson
| Updated Sep 17, 2017 at 11:48pm
A Lecturer at the Department of Geography and Resource Development, University of Ghana Professor Paul William Kojo Yankson, says the impact of education on the development of society can be achieved if education is of high quality and relevant to the development needs of the country.
Prof Yankson said the quality of education in the country has declined compared to the past and that there is the need for a paradigm shift in the delivery of education focusing on secondary education in the country.
He was speaking at the second annual engagement series organised by Mfantsipim Old Boys Association held under the theme: “Delivering Quality Secondary Education in Ghana: A Paradigm Shift Needed”.
Prof Yankson called for a national dialogue to strategize the content and the way the courses were taught to meet current educational standards.
He said it is imperative for school authorities to institute proactive learning approaches that involve finding solutions to issues and building the psychology of students to think outside the box.
Prof Yankson called for a strong system to support teaching and learning and re-orient the country’s school curriculum to promote student centered learning groups.
He called for a professional learning platform where teachers would share ideas on best practices as far as education was concerned to address some of the gaps in the sector.
Prof Yankson said the standard of education would continue to be critical in the production of the country’s human resources where graduates with the relevant skills and knowledge would contribute to the labour market.
An Educationist and founder of Gifted and Talented Education Mr. Anis Haffar re-affirmed his suggestion that students be allowed to use mobile phones in school stressing it would serve as a great tool for information gathering and prevent them from relying only on what they were taught in class.
He said this can be effective if the right structures were in place to integrate discipline in the use of these mobile phones.
“Teachers themselves need to be taught to use smartphones so that they can in turn use them to teach students appropriately and take away the monotony of teachers always being at the center of the learning process," he added.
Dr John Manful, Principal Consultant, AMC Consulting Limited, said the quality of SHS graduate would be the yardstick by which the efficacy of the free SHS programme would be measured, stressing that the role of stakeholders was important in delivering a product that is “fit for purpose”.
“Our students should be taught to be more creative, innovative, and entrepreneurial and to constantly think out of the box. Unfortunately their teachers have been “classically trained” and most of them may not be able to provide the required training”, he added.
A Private Legal Practitioner Mr. Ekow Kum Amua-Sekyi said the country must strengthen the various educational units and empower the Regional Managers for Churches to have a greater say in the governance of their school.
Mr. Laud Freeman, Management and Research Consultant for the Computer Numerical Control Project, called for a sustainable funding sources for the free SHS programme.
“We need a national dialogue on what we mean by quality education, I think parents in elite schools must be allowed to pay fees and old students unions be allowed to contribute in funding education in the country”.