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Teacher trainee allowance not achieving its purpose, it must be scraped – Kofi Asare

The Executive Director of the Africa Educational Watch, Kofi Asare, has indicated that the allowance given to teacher trainees at the various Colleges of Education by the government is not achieving its purpose and should be cancelled.

According to him, the allowance which has been implemented by successive governments for over 30 years is aimed at encouraging teachers to take up posting in rural communities but unfortunately, this is not happening.

 

 

 

The executive director also added that allowance is also given at the expense of improving education infrastructure in the country.

“… the reason the ministry has given for the maintenance of this policy, is the fact that it bonds teachers and it enables teachers to take postings in rural communities … According to data from the ministry, there were about 17,000 primary teachers which is more than the number of classrooms we have in this country.

“But if you go to the 75 deprived districts where these teachers are supposed to go, there were at least 2000 classrooms with no teacher – so we have surplus at the national level by shortage at the districts,” Asare said in an interview on JoyNews monitored by GhanaWeb.

On the opportunity cost of the trainee allowances, he said that “GH¢400 a month comes across as a small amount that the state can easily afford but if you have more than 50,000 thousand teachers benefiting then you talking about GH¢ 250 million and if I quantify what GH¢ 250 million means to a sector where 25 percent of primary schools do not junior high schools – student graduate from primary six and fall out of education, in a basic education system where 5,400 schools are taking place under trees, sheds and dilapidated structures, GH¢ 250 million is a lot of money, it can build 500 full furnished primary schools.”

He added that the money for the allowance can also be used to improve the infrastructure of these colleges which is in a very bad state and has forced the colleges to be running double track systems.

On his part, the Chairman of the Conference of Principals of Colleges of Education (PRINCOF), Dr. Emmanuel Nyamekye, said that the allowances should not be cancelled because they help attract quality students to the training colleges.

 

ghanaweb.com

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