A child-centred organisation, Child Rights International (CRI), has commended the Ministry of Education (MoE) and the Ghana Education Service (GES) for showing effectiveness in implementation of the 30 per cent quota system reserved for students of local communities in senior high school admissions under the new computerised system.
However, the organisation said if government “aims to implement and have a comprehensive policy that would address the needs of rural children, then the quota system should be reviewed and if possible peg it at 40 per cent to give more children the opportunity to have access to secondary school.”
The Executive Director of CRI, Mr. Bright Appiah, in a statement signed for the organisation, said increasing the quota would not only help majority of Ghanaian children from the rural communities to have access to secondary education but also change their lifestyle and the status quo.”
“As a country, we have seen the benefits of giving more opportunities to children to access quality education. If more initiatives are implemented and the quota system expanded, Ghana could be on its way to scaling the literacy rate among its citizens in the next few years,” the statement said.
30% Quota Yielding Result
Since the implementation of the 30 per cent quota for the rural communities, CRI explained that the move continues to yield greater results where children from those communities have been given access to Grade A and B schools.
“This policy has favoured the rural communities looking at the circumstances they find themselves and how they are able to pass their exams,” the statement said.
The organisation said a research it conducted revealed that when “children come from the rural communities and are able to access secondary schools which gives them a level playing ground, they perform far better than their counterparts from well-known schools.”
“They are also able to develop the right mentality where they ditch any wrong belief that otherwise would have hunted their future goals and ambitions,” the statement added.
Per the CRI’s statement, the 30 per cent quota to children from rural communities “has enhanced and reduced the losses the state is making when it comes to investment in the Education sector.”
An increase to 40 per cent quota, the organisation said, would be a right call and a bold step to fully scale access to quality education to majority of Ghanaian children of school-going age.
Regarding some of the challenges being faced in the computerised system, CRI urged the MoE, GES and relevant stakeholders to work as a collaborative team to remove any barriers that would affect the policy.
The organisation said it had hopes that those challenges could be addressed and completely removed to ensure quality and broad access to education.