Teachers reported to be using Islamic schools to avoid work
A survey conducted in the Tamale Metropolis and the Sagnerigu District has showed that some teachers are using Islamic schools as safe havens to play truancy, thus worsening the poor academic performance in the area.
The survey, conducted by the Northern Network for Education Development (NNED), a non-governmental organization, among other things observed that weak supervision in Islamic schools led to low instructional hours as compared to other schools because Islamic schools closed at 1200 hours to make way for Qu’ranic teachings.
The objective of the survey was to find out how best Arabic instructions could be integrated into the regular school time table, and instructional hours could be increased in Islamic schools.
It was also to ensure that education managers, including those in Islamic units, equitably allocated and effectively managed teacher supply issues.
Mr Eric Kavaarpuo, a consultant to NNED, presenting the findings at a workshop in Tamale, on Tuesday, said the performance had been poor in all Islamic schools in the four education units between 2010 and 2013.
He said the Catholic Unit schools, as well as the Tamale Metropolitan Assembly schools, always performed better as compared to the Ahmadiyya and Islamic schools.
Mr Kavaarpuo said other problems that the survey team discovered are that most of the Islamic schools lagged behind in infrastructure and amenities including toilet facilities, water supply, computers and textbooks.
He said some schools also lack teachers of Ghanaian Language, Social Studies, Mathematics and English, and even Arabic instructors.
He recommended that unit officers and District Education officers should profile the needs of all Islamic schools and make them available to the district assemblies.
The survey recommends among others that, the Ghana Education Service (GES), in consultation with religious leaders, should formulate schedules for Arabic instruction, with the view of integrating it with regular school time table.
NNED is a Tamale-based NGO working towards quality education for all in Northern Ghana through advocacy, resource mobilisation and harmonisation of stakeholder efforts.