All senior high school students in Forms 1 & 2 are returning to school today to write the end of semester examination in order to complete their second semester.
They will be in school until January 28, 2022, when they would be expected to have completed the examination, thus ending the 2021 academic year.
This follows an arrangement between the Ministry of Education and its agency, the Ghana Education Service (GES) on the one hand, and members of the Conference of Heads of government Assisted Secondary Schools (CHASS) on the other hand.
The ministry says it has resolved the concerns raised by the CHASS bordering on challenges that threatened the reopening of the schools to enable the students to write the examination and successfully end the academic year.
On December 23, 2021, the CHASS at its National Executive Council meeting resolved that if by December 31, 2021, the government and for that matter, the GES did not release the full complement of the outstanding monies and food supplies to schools, it would officially inform the management of the GES on January 4, 2022 that schools would not be reopened.
It planned that after informing the GES, it would also advise parents not to send their wards to schools on the reporting date of January 5, as heads would not be able to administer the running of the schools amidst those challenges.
The CHASS requested among others that the first semester Forms 1&2 recurrent balance for 2021 and the whole of the second semester recurrent for Forms 1,2&3 be settled.
It also requested the provision of funds for the purchase of perishables for the second semester and also money for the conduct of the end of semester examination.
The CHASS further requested that the National Food and Buffer Stock (NAFCO) should make available all outstanding food supplies to schools.
But on December 30, 2021, a meeting at the instance of the Minister of Education, Dr Yaw Osei Adutwum and management of the GES was held to chart a course to resolve the challenges.
The ministry has consequently released funds for heads of schools to purchase the perishable food items to cover the period the students would be in school.
Funds have also been released to enable the heads of schools to successfully conduct the end-of-semester examination and the general running of their administration.
Additionally, arrangements are in place for the supply of non-perishable food items through the NAFCO to all the SHSs to keep the students until they complete the end-of-semester examination.