The quality of education has improved under free SHS programme 

Gifty Twum-Ampofo

A Deputy Minister of Education in charge of Technical and Vocational Education Training (TVET), Madam Gifty Twum Ampofo, has stated that the free Senior High School (SHS) programme haas improved the quality of education. 

“Teachers were not left behind when the government introduced this programme. We had a policy of subsidising acquisition of laptops, professional development allowance for our teachers and transformed the best teacher award to the Ghana teacher award with attractive prizes” she said. 

Madam Ampofo announced this at Tarkwa when she represented the Vice President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, at the 60th anniversary celebration of Tarkwa Senior High School (TARSCO) in the Western Region.  
It was on the theme “Achieving academic excellence through discipline for national development”. 

The deputy minister said, “gone are the days when we thought there was gold, diamond, timber, bauxite and other mineral resources so Ghana was rich, but now nations have realized that with all these if you don’t develop your human resource, you would be in trouble”.  

She added “That is why our President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo introduced the famous but challenging intervention, the free SHS programme and I’m glad to say we have also added the free TVET so together you could say free second cycle education”. 

The Deputy Minister on behalf of the Minister of Roads and Highways, Mr Kwasi Amoako-Attah, who is a former student of TARSCO pledged to construct a modern computer laboratory for the school. 

Madam Eva Mends, Coordinating Director, Ministry of Finance, advised all to invest in the future generation to be relevant to the needs of society in the next 60 years, by sharpening their creative mentality to appreciate that, their changing society was in dire need of intellectuals who could blend theory and practice.  

She challenged the upcoming generation of TARSCO Past Students Association (TARPSA) to start dreaming about where they want the school to be by the next diamond celebration and work towards it to make TARSCO a household name of excellence and integrity in the educational sector of their nation. 

The Deputy Minister of Lands and Natural Resources who doubles as the Member of Parliament for Tarkwa-Nsuaem constituency, Mr George Mireku Duker, promised to donate GH¢20,000.00 to help TARSCO to participate in the national science and Maths quiz competition. 

Mr George Oduro, Headmaster of TARSCO, expressed gratitude to the government for constructing a six-unit classroom block, girl’s dormitory, roads within the school which are almost completed as well as donated a 65-seater bus to the school 

He again thanked past students of TARSCO, cooperate organizations and the Parent, Teacher Association for contributing towards the development of the institution. 

Mr Oduro said even though they performed well in the 2021 West African Senior School Certificate Examination, management of the school had put in place effective strategies to ensure their performance improved every year. 

He mentioned perennial flooding of the school when it rained heavily, refurbishment of old buildings and acquiring a new pick-up to replace the old one as some challenges confronting the school, and therefore, appealed to the government, corporate institutions, and individuals for assistance. 

Mr Oduro further said “for the school to return to single track a 12-unit classroom block is needed. Although a site has been identified work is yet to commence”, 

Ms Emmanuella Aidoo, Girls Prefect, thanked the 1994 ‘O’ level year group of TARSCO for constructing an ultra-modern infirmary block for the school and called on them to support the school with some medication. 

A bust of the first headmaster of TARSCO, Mr Charles K. E Stephens was unveiled and dignitaries led by TARPSA cut the 60 years anniversary cake. 

Awards were presented to deserving students, staff, and some members of TARPSA. 

Source: GNA 

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