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Universities Can Be Sued For Publishing Students' Results   
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The Head of Political Science Department at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, (KNUST) Dr. Yaw Amoako Baah, is advocating for an end to the practice where students’ examination results are published on notice boards on various campuses as it “violates the rights of the student”.

The call comes in the wake of the death of a first year student of the University of Education, Winneba, who allegedly committed suicide after his name was published on the University’s notice board for having failed three subjects in the end of semester examinations.

According to reports, the student was due to be withdrawn from the school as it was standard procedure for the University to dismiss students who fail in three subjects. He reportedly ended his life in order to escape shame after seeing his results on the school’s notice board.

The sad incident has rekindled debate for a review of the conditions for students’ withdrawal and the mode for the publication of results. The Ministry of Education in response to the public outcry has called on school authorities to revise their mode of publishing end of semester results.

Speaking to Kumasi based Ultimate Radio; the Public Relations Officer of the Ministry of Education, Paul Krampah, indicated it was about time the educational institutions especially institutions of higher learning, kept details of student’s examination performances discrete to the individuals.

He made a strong case for school authorities to consider mailing examination results privately to the individuals concerned rather than make public display of them on notice boards.

“I am sure the boy committed the suicide because he realized he had failed and his other mates must have already seen it. I think we need to find an effective way to revise the way we communicate results to students instead of pasting these results on the notice boards. Luckily the university of Education Winneba has come out to say it will look at the issue and see how best they can address it in future so that what has occurred does not occur again” he said.

Mr. Krampah indicated that although it has been an age long practice, if it is now proving injurious, it had to be taken seriously. He said his ministry was critically going to hold discussions at the national level to see how best it could be tackled. He assured that the Ministry would involve Vice Chancellors in the discussions to chat an appropriate path so as not to unreasonably expose students to such emotional vulnerabilities. Lecturer and Head of Political Science at the KNUST, Dr. Richard Amoako Baah, says the practice is illegal.

“It is a violation of student’s rights. Just because one is a student doesn’t mean they have ceased to have the rights of a citizen. They have a right to privacy and it makes no sense at all for the university to publish results that were especially negative ones. When you do that it shames students and no one wants to be shamed and it has to stop” he noted.

Dr. Amoako Baah added that Universities could be sued by any student for such an act. He insisted that “apart from the legal angle to this, it is unethical and inappropriate for people to be embarrassed through such processes”.
Source: Ivan Heathcote-Fumador/Ultimate Radio/Kumasi

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