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Focus on quality education not duration – Naana Opoku Agyemang

As the New Patriotic Party (NPP) government contemplates a possible review of the duration of the Senior High School from three years back to four years, the immediate past Education Minister is asking the government to concentrate on quality rather than duration.

According to Professor Naana Jane Opoku Agyemang, the duration is not the only critical factor to consider when making efforts to improve the quality of education.

The Minister of Planning, Professor Gyan Baffour, on Wednesday revealed that government is monitoring the current three-year SHS system to inform a possible review back to four years.

The NPP administration under President John Kufuor introduced the 4-year Senior High School programme in 2007.

However, the National Democratic Congress (NDC) reverted to the 3-year system after it regained power in 2009.

But Professor Jane Nana Opoku Agyemang in an interview with Citi News said, there are other tangible issues that the government must consider before taking the ultimate decision to revert to the 4-year duration system.

“There are many quality indicators, and if what we want is quality, then we have to ask ourselves so many questions. Even if you want to tweak any part, why isolate only the duration. What about the other part? Whether you did 4 years or 3 years, history has told us that there were some schools that did well anyway,” she said.

She added that the previous government’s approach was to analyze the factors that enable some schools to perform well under the 3-year system, and why others could not, and introduce measures to bring them at par.

Meanwhile, an educationist, Anis Hafar, has backed the calls for a four-year education system, but has called for efforts to improve the quality of teaching and learning.

He said the government in its deliberations must consider introducing practical work to ensure the holistic development of students.

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