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29-Sep-2009  
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Majority of science teachers in the country are suffering from chronic diseases for lack of protection from the chemicals they work with, Mr Nesta Mensah, Brong Ahafo Regional President of Ghana Association of Science Teachers (GAST) said on Tuesday.

He said a greater percentage of science teachers, under the effect of concentrated acids they used without any form of protection, were now either ulcer patients, asthmatic or visually-impaired.

Mr Mensah was speaking in Sunyani at the opening of a two-day workshop for 40 members of GAST under the theme; “Towards the Contextualization of the Teaching and Learning of Science and Technology”.

The workshop was organised by the Centre for School and Community, Science and Technology Studies, (SACOST) of the University of Education, Winneba and sponsored by Teaching and Learning Innovation Fund (TALIF), a World Bank funding agency through National Council for Tertiary Education (NCTE).

Mr Mensah said the neglect of science educators in Ghana was retarding the economic growth of the country, explaining that whilst their “concerns to the government are not taken,” approach to politicians for sponsorship for their programmes were “thrown back doors”.

He said responsibility and night allowances meant for teachers after attending workshops were drastically reduced, adding, science teachers had been crying for risk allowances for about three years now but government seemed not to hear.

Mr Memsah regretted that since the fall of the first republic, succeeding governments had not paid much attention to the development of science and technology.

He said that had made the country a producer of raw materials that attracted unfavourable prices at the international market.

Mr Mensah said most students considered mathematics and science courses as “monsters” and stayed away from them.

He therefore urged teachers and lecturers in the field to make the teaching of those subjects more practical, attractive and lively to facilitate the scientific, technological and socio-economic development of the region.

Professor Kolawole Raheem, Coordinator of SACOST said Ghana and most African countries were facing real crisis in the development and utilization of science and technology to achieve economic emancipation due to inappropriate system of education introduced and bequeathed to the Africans by the colonial masters.

He explained that colonial education isolated learners from their communities and infused in them colonial values, customs, attitudes and knowledge systems that ignored the African systems of values, customs and production methods.

Professor Raheem said the situation had led, among others, to the under-utilization of the processes and products of the scientific enterprise and lack of contribution of Africa to knowledge production that was germane to the continent.

He indicated that SACOST therefore sought to promote the awareness of endogenous knowledge and its integration into the global knowledge of science and technology.

Mr Kwadwo Nyamekye-Marfo, Brong Ahafo Regional Minister, in an address delivered for him, said the country needed agents of change for her accelerated development and that could not be done without the application of science and technology.

He reiterated the government’s preparedness and commitment to provide the financial and logistical support to enhance science and technology education in the country.

Dr Mrs Lucy Acheampong, Deputy Regional Director of Education for Brong Ahafo, lauded the initiative and effort of SACOST as human capital development would not be complete without the study and application of science and technology.

Professor Kolawole Raheem, Coordinator of SACOST, said Ghana and most African countries were facing real crisis in the development and utilization of science and technology to achieve economic emancipation due to inappropriate system of education introduced and bequeathed to the Africans by the colonial masters.

He explained that colonial education isolated learners from their communities and infused in them colonial values, customs, attitudes and knowledge systems that ignored the African systems of values, customs and production methods.

Professor Raheem stated that the situation had led, among others, to the under-utilization of the processes and products of the scientific enterprise and lack of contribution of Africa to knowledge production that was germane to the continent.

He said SACOST therefore sought to promote the awareness of endogenous knowledge and its integration into the global knowledge of science and technology.

The Central, Greater Accra, Ashanti, Volta, Eastern, Western and Northern Regions had benefited from the programme while the Upper East and West Regions are yet to benefit.
 
 
 
 
 

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