Mr Alex Tettey-Enyo, Minister of Education has warned that heads of second cycle institutions would be sanctioned if they failed to transfer the Life Education Assurance (LEA) money paid by students to the Junior Achievers’ Trust International/State Insurance Company (JATI/SIC) account.
He said “information reaching the Ministry indicates that some Heads have been billing students for the JATI/SIC Life Education Assurance but fail to pay the money to the JATI/SIC”.
The Minister, whose speech was read on his behalf by Mr George Lawson, an officer at the Ministry of Education, gave the warning when he opened this year’s JATI/Students’ Enterprise Fair at the Teacher’s Hall in Accra on Friday.
The fair, which displayed handicrafts made by students from some selected senior high schools across the country, aimed at inculcating entrepreneurial spirit in the students.
JATI, a non-governmental organization, also used the ceremony to present a cheque of GH¢1,260, being payment of school fees for three students of the Adonten Senior High School, as well as launched a supplementary textbook entitled ‘Applied Economics for Entrepreneurship’ for Senior High Schools (SHS), authored by a lecturer from the University of Cape Coast.
Mr Tettey-Enyo said ‘this money (LEA) is not meant to be a substitute for government grants to support SHS or for school projects’ and urged Heads of second cycle schools to endeavour to pay the fees to avoid being sanctioned.
LEA, introduced five years ago by JATI with approval from the Ghana Education Service, is a GH¢16 fee charged on newly admitted students to second cycle institutions.
Heads of the institutions then collect the money and are expected to pay it into a JATI/SIC account to be used by JATI to finance education of brilliant second cycle students whose parents do not have the means to support their education.
He commended JATI for the initiative and pledged the Ministry’s support to ensure its success.
Mr Paul Yeboah, Chief Executive Officer of JATI said the organization, from next year, would partner with International Labour Organization to introduce its ‘Know About Business’ (KAB) programme in the country.
Mr Yeboah explained that KAB aimed to develop entrepreneurial skills, attitudes and mindset, among young men and women to better understand the functions and operations of sustainable enterprises.
He said JATI had so far paid GH¢14,702,39 under the LEA for this academic year.
He urged other schools to subscribe to the LEA programme.
JATI’s core objectives are promoting entrepreneurial skills training in schools as well as preventing or reducing school dropouts.