Free SHS Brouhaha: CHASS Is To Be Blamed

The Conference of Heads of Assisted Secondary Schools (CHASS), have remained tightlipped, about the problems confronting the free Senior High School (SHS) policy since its introduction.

Their silence is too deafening to be ignored, whiles the policy is facing both financial and infrastructural challenges.

Before the introduction of the free SHS policy by this government last year, we have had experience in the past, where students from the three Northern regions, who had some form of subsidy by way of feeding grant, have had to stay home longer than necessary when school reopens, or are sent home from school because, government have failed or delayed to release the grant.

Getting every Ghanaian child educated up to the secondary level, is an issue that is non-negotiable.

However, adequate planning should have taken place, prior to the introduction of the free SHS policy.

The government has announced the introduction of a multi-track system; this has become necessary because of the number of students who are expected to progress from the Junior High School (JHS) to the SHS, next academic year.

As attractive as this alternative is, its smooth implementation will depend on the quality of planning and synergy prior to its adoption as a policy.

Headmasters for fear of victimization and transfer, have decided to keep quiet, swallowing hook, line and sinker, anything the government pushes down their throat.

Secondary schools across the country are suffocating in debts, suppliers to the schools, especially those in the northern regions, will tell you, how much and how many months they are owed.

CHASS, can no longer weep and complain in private, whatever the outcome of the policy, they are going to be the first people to feel its impact.

The government, should not be allowed to use intimidation and threats of transfer to cow the headmasters, who are going to bear the brunt of the policy.

This newspaper, wishes to lend its voice to that of other well-meaning Ghanaians, who are calling for broader consultation and stakeholder engagement, before implementing the multi-track system.

Those in the forefront of its implementation do not have their children in the country to attend our poorly funded and poorly resourced secondary schools. We should not allow the government in the name of politics, jeopardize the future of the next generation.

CHASS must speak out, they should not become the vehicle for the destruction of the future of education in the country.





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