You’ll Not Absorb Students Under Free SHS – Govt To Private SHSs

Government has rejected demands by proprietors of Private Senior High Schools to be included in the list of schools absorbing students in the government’s flagship Free Senior High School programme.

Currently none of the private schools in the country were included in the self placement system which placed students in senior high schools across the country.

Addressing a the press conference in Accra on Wednesday, General Secretary of the Conference of Heads of Private Second Cycle Schools (CHOPSS), Joseph Dzamesi said, although CHOPSS prepared an updated list of numbered schools and presented this list to the Computerised School Selection and Placement System (CSSPS) with the understanding that as was done over the previous years, some students will be posted to the private senior high schools but not one student was posted to any of the private schools- a development, heads of the private schools find unacceptable.

“What does this say about government’s regard for private senior high schools, when it is ready to post 92 percent of students who graduated from junior high schools into public senior high schools and pay all their fees.

“Which students will patronize private schools, what is to happen to the millions of Ghana cedis that have been invested into our schools, what is to happen to the 10,000 plus Ghanaian workers who are currently employed in our schools, what is the government’s plan to provide a platform that gives our schools realistic chance to thrive,” Mr Dzamesi asked.
But the Deputy Minister of Education, Dr Yaw Osei Adutwum has emphasized that private senior high schools have no role to play in the Free SHS policy.

“Why don’t you come to the Ministry and say we have this issue and then we discuss it. This is not going to compromise ant quality, we’re rather introducing measures that will improve quality. Our private providers always want a market but I don’t think it’s fair to disparage an existing system that has worked very well especially at the option 3 level just because they want to get a piece of the pie in terms of the market.

“I believe that we have to support the private sector to thrive but when it comes to a government policy such as Free SHS, we’re sending students to public schools across the country and not private schools. Let me be transparent here, I also have a private secondary school and personally could have benefited but that’s not the point.”