Nana Addo awarded by Rwanda for bringing up Free SHS

Nana Addo awarded by Rwanda for bringing up Free SHS

- Nana Addo has been honoured by the African Leadership University (ALU) for his 'Free SHS' program

- The president was handed a citation written by the late former president of South Africa, Nelson Mandela

- The honour comes in the wake of some reservations over the entire program

President Akufo Addo has been honoured in Rwanda for his flagship 'Free SHS' program.This was contained in a citation from the former South African president, Nelson Mandela read by the African Leadership University (ALU).

Founder of the African Leadership University, Fred Swaniker, explained that President Akufo-Addo embodies the meaning of the quote “education is the most powerful weapon we can use to change the world.”

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“In recognition of his extraordinary commitment to education by implementing free universal education in Ghana, African Leadership University (ALU) recognizes President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo for his exemplary leadership, and I quote “Education is the most powerful weapon for which you can use to change the world,” portions of the citation read.

In the first year of the implementation of the Free SHS policy, 90,000 more students entered senior high school in 2017 than they did in 2016.

Again, in 2018, the second year of the policy, 180,000 more students have been admitted into senior high schools across the country.

The original motive of the free SHS policy is for all Ghanaian students of all economic class to have senior high education without having to pay a cedi.

The opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) has, from the day of the program's implementation, argued that the policy is not feasible.

Things seem not to be turning out well for the program as the NPP expected as the finance minister, Ken Ofori Attah, has made the case for the rich and wealthy to be left out of this new program.

"I can't take my child to Achimota ....and drive away and Ken Ofori-Atta not pay anything whilst I can pay for 10 people," the minister revealed.

Also, the former education minister, Jane Naana Opoku Agyeman, has told Joy FM that the NPP's Free SHS promise was "not feasible" given the severe infrastructural deficit, the financial constraints and an ever-increasing youthful population that would make funding a nightmare for the Finance minister.

Free SHS double tracking system

Meanwhile, the education minister, Mathew Opoku Prempeh, has revealed that the free SHS program will now be a shift system called the "double track system".

The minister revealed that this new system will improve enrollment and improve the policy.

This new shift system will take effect from August and will see SHS 2 students divided into two shift categories where each group goes on a 2-month vacation on a rotational basis.

How SHS double tracking system works

What this means is that while one shift is on vacation, the other will be in school. In Ghana, the school calendar starts from September and ends in April with three different terms.

The first term is from September to December, the second term starts in January and ends in April while the third term is from April/May to July. Also, every semester will be 80 days for the two tracks.

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For one semester, every track will be in school for 40 days then go for a break for 40 days. Teacher motivation has been increased from 20 hours for the year to 70 hours for the year.

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