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Dr. Asaah decries political influence in education system, says there’s steep decline in quality of tertiary students

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Dr. Mohammed Sumaila Asaah, a lecturer at the University of Development Studies in Tamale, expressed concern about the steep drop in the quality of tertiary students. Furthermore, the lecturer has expressed dissatisfaction with the degree of political influence in the education sector. 

“It is getting worse, and we have been discussing that in academia. We are really struggling. Academia is getting compromised.”

Dr. Asaah shared these sentiments when he spoke to Mark Smith on A1 Radio’s Day Break Upper East Show recently. 

According to Dr. Asaah, the standards of pre-tertiary education have been compromised, and as such, the effects of the same are felt at the tertiary level. 

“Parents want it easy for their children. Ghanaian parents say, I am working so hard because of the children, and so at the basic level, like in a creche, you see parents go to bribe teachers to give their children good grades. They go to the private school, and they are just doing everything possible to get the face value of education, which is on paper, so they can say, things like my child has gotten all A’s.”

Because of some of the actions of parents, children at the pre-tertiary level are not pushed to become the best, “and for them to be able to do things on their own.”

“They transport them from there into the secondary schools, and then we now go and buy past questions for them and all that. That is the level of political influence we would really have to control as a society,” he added.

Dr. Asaah explained that many helpful parts of the Ghanaian education system have been taken away. A critical example that Dr. Asaah cited is the removal of school farm systems. These farms, he said, helped students build character and develop hands-on skills and interests in agriculture. 

“The children need to know the basics of life,” he said. 

Tertiary institutions are now under pressure to increase enrollment exponentially because of certain government demands. This means lecturers are unable to properly monitor the progress of each student, according to Dr. Asaah. 

“You have about 1,000 students in the class. What can you do? You would be teaching, and some of them would be doing their own thing with their girlfriends. They are waiting for you to finish so you can give them the slides. They would go and chew and pour. Then, we are also restrained because if you set certain difficult questions, like the ones where students would need to do more writing, the lecturer would find it difficult to mark. So sometimes we also compromise and put multiple-choice questions alongside questions with straight forward answers. Is this the best of students we can produce? We have serious issues,” he said. 

Source: A1radioonline.com|101.1MHz|Mark Kwasi Ahumah Smith|Ghana

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