From Samuel Mensah Torbizo, Mamponteng
In a move to complement the efforts of government in the provision of secondary education for Ghanaian children, the St Joseph Parish of the Roman Catholic Church at Mamponteng in the Ashanti Region, has inaugurated a complex secondary school, known as Our Lady of Grace Senior High School.
The school which commences full operation in September this year, will be a mixed second cycle institution and will run as a private school.
The magnificent educational edifice is made up of 24 unit classrooms, an administration block, an Information Communication Technology (ICT) centre, a complex library, science resource centre and a 32 seater KVIP facility
The new complex educational structure, was funded through donation by Parishioners from Our Lady of Grace Parish in Edina Minnesota in USA led by Rev. Father Robert Schwartz.
The donation by the parishioners to build the school was as a result of the strong relation that exists between Our Lady of Grace Parish and the Mamponten St Joseph Parish in the past ten years.
The project was estimated to have cost GH¢400,000 (4 billion old cedis) and was completed in ten months.
The Parish priest of St Joseph Catholic Church Mamponteng, Rev. Father Paul Atta Nsiah, in an interview with this paper, asked parents to capitalize on the closeness of the school to encourage their children to enrolled in it.
Rev Father Nsiah, who is also the Vicar General of Konogo –Mampong Diocese, believed that education is the driving force for modern development, it was incumbent on all the stakeholders to contribute their quota in providing the needed infrastructure to enhance the attainment of the desired quality of education.
He indicated that it was avowed commitment of the leadership of the church to partner with the management of the new school to inculcate in the students character traits, that would make them exceptional among other students.
“This school though, is opened to every student irrespective of their religious affiliations provided they have the entry requirements, it would be run on Catholic principles,“he stressed.
Rev. Father Nsia, expressed his profound gratitude to the parishioners for their donation and called on other individuals, philanthropists and corperate entities to help the school in putting up other facilities, such as dinning and assembly halls, bungalows for staff among others.
In his address, a deputy minister of education in charge of basic education, Mr. Alex Kyereme, disclosed that the ministry through the National Inspectorate Board (NIB) was squaring all the rough edges to put in place a solid system at circuit level to enhance proper supervision in public basic schools.
According to him, this is to check absenteeism among teachers which is eventually gaining root in the basic schools.
The Deputy Minister, also revealed that works had started in earnest to deal with issues confronting decentralizing education and if this materializes, the control of schools would be in the hands of the traditional authorities and the District Assemblies in accordance with Act1961.
Mr. Kyeremeh assured them that government would continue to provide resources to increase access for quality education.
He said, for the past years, government had pumped huge resources to education indicating seriousness it attached to developing the country’s human resources, through holistic education.
He lauded the Catholic Church for remaining one of the major stakeholders and strong partners in education at all levels, adding, that for the past years Catholic Secondary schools are ranked among the best in the country.