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Respect teachers — GNAT tells govt

NEWS DESK REPORT


GHANA NATIONAL Association of Teachers (GNAT) has called on the government to proceed with caution by consulting stakeholders in education before the roll-out of the double-track semester system being proposed for the running of  senior high schools.

Deputy Greater Accra Regional Secretary of GNAT, Mr Felix Owusu Ansah, says the government’s failure to consult the major stakeholders on the tracking system shows disrespect, a development that portrays how teachers have been relegated to the background.

“We are still wondering why the Ministry and the government as a whole would like to keep civil society, even teacher unions, in the dark on such an important policy, especially when the Coalition is represented on the Ministerial Advisory Board. They have taken teachers for granted and it’s time the government respects (sic) us,” he said in a radio interview.

According to him, teacher unions were only informed about the policy and not consulted, a development he said was a recipe for worry in the country.

But, Mr Samuel Frank Dadzie, General Secretary of the National Association of Graduate Teachers says he believes the policy must be supported

“In the document that I saw, this policy is supposed to last for only five years because within the next five years, what we are hearing from the corridors of power is that the government would have then built infrastructure to accommodate all the two streams.

“When that happens, what would you do with those teachers? We need to sit down and discuss this situation thoroughly as a nation. Let us not rush into something that will spite our faces over time,” he noted.

What is the double-track system?

In a single-track system, students and staff are in school or vacation at the same time within an academic year.

But the double year-round system divides the entire student body and staff into two different tracks such that while one track is in school, the other is on vacation.

The rotation sequence will depend on the year-round calendar being used. In Ghana, the school calendar starts from September and ends in July, making three different terms.

The first term is from September and ends in December, the second term runs from January to  April while the third term spans April/May to July.

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