Headmasters forcing students to pay illegal fees results in dropout – EduWatch

According to Africa Education Watch (EduWatch), an education think tank, certain headmasters’ illegal fees are concerning and are driving away students.

This follows the GES’s interdict of more than eleven headmasters from the Ashanti, Bono, Eastern, and Greater Accra regions for allegedly collecting unapproved fees from Form One students.

The headmasters of Berekum Senior High School, Mr. Afi Yaw Stephen, and Odomaseman Senior High School, Mr. Joseph Jilinjeh Abudu, have been interdicted as of late in order for the investigation to begin.

They must turn them over to the appropriate District Directors of Education until they hear from the GES again.

Speaking with Francis Abban, the Executive Director of EduWatch, on Morning Starr, Kofi Asare clarified that the unlawful fees levied on first-year students had a negative impact on a large number of impoverished families.

“It is worrying that over 50 schools we have conducted research on, that school heads are imposing illegal fees and making extra demands aside from what their employers that is Ghana Education Service has asked.

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“It is worrying because poor parents who cannot afford may be turned away because they may lose interest. I say this because people feel that it is something small, no it is not small,” Mr. Asare stated.

According to him, from a research which Africa Education Watch has conducted on the cost of Secondary Education in Ghana exposes how much parents will have to pay before students are enrolled. 

“My grandson Emmanuel completed Junior High School with aggregate 18 and was placed in Nkawea Technical. We didn’t have the money to purchase the items required for admission and make all payments. He was a boarder. The items will cost around GHC3,000. Her mother and I are managing a farm to feed the family. It is not a large-scale farm that sells the crops and saves money for a secondary education. He is currently home doing nothing. If help comes through for us we will let him go back to school next academic year.  (May 2023),” excepts from a yet to be released report by EduWatch.

Even though education is free, Mr. Asare claimed that GHC3000 deprived a student from a low-income household access to an education. 

He went on to say that some parents are paying twice as much as the government has authorized, which is concerning given the huge amounts of money that parents must pay.

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