Institute for Transgenerational Leaders (ITL), a policy initiative network and development agency, has set March 29, 2022 to hold a public lecture dubbed “Consolidating the gains of the Free SHS Education Policy: Protecting the Legacy for Future Generations”.
The public lecture, which will take place at the GIMPA GB Main Auditorium, is aimed at honouring President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo for his contribution to education.
This was contained in a statement released by the Executive Secretaries of the Institute, namely Lawrence Kwesi Botchway Jnr, Odeneho Oppong Prince and Tony Marshall Adoninaab.
The statement noted that despite the progress made in the past few years, a vast number of children had been denied further education because their parents could not fund their secondary education.
The organisation said higher education is integral in the realisation of economic growth and development, as lack of education causes poverty and slow economic development.
It lauded President Akufo-Addo’s achievement in the educational sector. “What President Akufo Addo has achieved through his accomplishments in education is exemplary. President Akufo Addo is a true asset to the Republic of Ghana. His service and commitment towards expanding education are exceptional, and deserve to be commended. The legacies of the President must be consolidated and protected,” it said.
The group also acknowledged President Akufo-Addo’s understanding of the need for quality and accessible secondary school education to all Ghanaians, irrespective of religion, social status, race, ethnicity and gender, before becoming the President. This, they insisted, is a priority that had ensured free and accessible education.
“Undoubtedly, the Free Senior High School (Free SHS) programme is the biggest and most successful pro-poor policy ever implemented by any government in the educational sector of this country. It remains by far the most effective and the most highly applauded policy intervention of President Akufo-Addo’s administration based on relevant articles in the 1992 Republican Constitution,” the statement added.
According to available data, a whopping 100,000 children who passed the Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) yearly could not further their education into SHS due to lack of funds. The implementation of the Free Senior High School in 2017 has reversed this trend.
At the time of implementation of the Free SHS policy in 2017, 800,000 Ghanaian students benefited from the policy. Currently, the number of beneficiaries has exceeded 1.6 million students.