Committee meeting of 14.1.21 (via Zoom).

At our recent committee meeting, we lamented the fact that our funds are limited, because we had almost 70 very good applications for funding sanitation projects in Ghanaian schools. After careful consideration, we selected the following schools and organisations, our grants totalling almost £20 000.

Kyekywere, Akroma/Adzenyewodze, Ampekro, Chebogo, Dohini, Gindabo, Jonshegu, Knavilli-Tawfikiya, Kpongeri, Mbanayili, Seripe, Kenyasi No. 2, Kings Academy, Developing Kids Charity, Dimale, Walewale Technical/Vocational Institute.

Many of the other applications merited grants as well as the above, so much so that we have decided to cancel the March 2021 window and instead take up the list of sanitation projects and try to fund as many of them as possible. Decisions will be made at our May committee meeting.

Report on the Covid19 pandemic in Ghana

This is a brief update on Education and Covid19 in Ghana.

There had been a gradual easing of restrictions on education, in response to the level of cases on Covid19 pandemic. Statistics on Ghana, as at September 9, 2020 are as follows:

Cases 45,188; Recovered 44,042; Deaths 283

On the bases of scientific advice, a scheme of phased return, in batches to school/university, for revision, examination and completion of academic calendar for 2019/20 was introduced but with strict adherence to the MOH/WHO protocols. (Washing hands, wearing face masks, social distancing)

University students in their final year, were to return to campus, to complete revision of academic work and examination on-line and/or on campus. Almost all the universities have now completed the outstanding academic work for the year and graduation ceremonies online have been held in recent weeks. Fresh Admissions in progress.

The final year Senior High School students returned to their schools for revision and WAEC examinations in July/August and they have also completed and awaiting results.

The Final Year Junior High School students are to return to School for revision and write their BECE examination in September.

The 2nd Year SHS and JHS students are to return to school from 5th October for revision and end of year examinations. Class sizes to be reduced to 25 SHS and 30 JHS.

Academic Calendar for Nursery, Primary and First Year JHS and SHS has been cancelled.

A new academic year will begin in January 2021. The Ministry of Education /Ghana Education Service is working out arrangements for the modification of the curriculum and length of the term to mitigate, over time, any deficiencies in academic work.

As part of these arrangements, all institutions were fumigated, PPEs and materials for hand washing were provided. Schools were attached to near-by hospitals and also set up sick bay for emergencies.

JHS students and teachers are being provided with one hot meal a day for the period that they will be in school.

Meanwhile the 7 December 2020, time for General Elections is drawing near the political parties are making various promises on Education and social services. These include: Continuation of Free Education from Primary to SHS, extension of free education to students in private schools, extension of Free education to Universities/or 50 percent fees plus student loans.

S Kofi Ohene

GSA Representative, Accra 9th September, 2020