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Computer Placement: Fate of Nearly 200,000 BECE Students in Limbo   
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The Head of Public Relations at the Ministry of Education, Mr Kofi Krampah, says expansion of the country’s educational institutions to accommodate qualified students, is the surest means of addressing the perennial problem of brilliant students, who fail to gain admission into higher institutions of learning.

He was commenting on PEACEFM’s Kokrokoo, on today’s front page publication of the Daily Graphic that, “only 50% of BECE Graduates qualified for placement into Senior High Schools” and Technical Institutes.

Out of a total of 395,649 candidates who wrote the examination, only 198,642 qualified for placement under the computer schools selection and placement system (CSSPS). But Mr. Krampa argues, that this is not the first time such a situation has occurred.

“It is a trend that goes on every year, especially in this era of computer placement,” he added. He disclosed that government is ready to expand 10 existing Technical Institutes and also construct new ones to enhance education.

The CSSPS was introduced in 2005 to replace manual selection process, which was said to be cumbersome. There were also allegations of corruption and favouritism under that system. The CSSPS aims at promoting efficiency, transparency, fairness, equity and speed among other things, in the selection process.

During the first placement exercise in 2005, 151,016 out of a total of 177,070 qualified candidates were placed in senior high and technical schools. In 2006, 308,379 BECE candidates registered and 160,119 qualified for placement. A total of 145,961 candidates were placed and 3,031 deferred their placement. More than 188,881 candidates were placed in 2007, while about 179,000 were placed last year.

Mr Krampa acknowledged the situation is a major blow to government, but pointed out that, all is not lost. “Government is looking at measures to curtail the situation. There is an option to send unlucky students to private institutions, it is expensive though, i must concede,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT) has described as “pathetic the low literacy level” in the country. Speaking on the same platform, the President of GNAT, Mr Joseph Kyei Agyei, blamed the illiteracy rate on the lack of adequate educational infrastructure and logistics in the country. He advised brilliant students who failed to get placement into any government Senior High School, to resist attempts at enrolling them in private institutions.
Source: Alex Ofei/peacefmonline

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