1 -Year National Service for SHS Leavers good but not Appropriate Placement for COVID-19 Disruption – Educationist

An Educationist and Counsellor, Mr Daniel Fenyi has indicated, that a 1 -Year National Service for SHS Leavers good but not an appropriate Placement for COVID-19 Disruption in Ghana.

He was responding to the Education Minister’s Assertion that Senior High School leavers could do a mandatory one-year national service.

The Minister of Education, Matthew Opoku Prempeh, has on Tuesday evening, 21/04/2020, during an interview session on Paul Adom Okyere’s Metro TV Good Evening Ghana, revealed that the Government is considering introducing a mandatory one-year national service for all SHS Leavers.

His justification was that the national service will make up for the disruption in the academic calendar caused by the Coronavirus pandemic which has disrupted the academic calendar.

But according to the Educationist, The concept of national service, if mooted well, in his opinion, will be a good policy especially for two reasons;

”a. It will afford our SHS Leavers the opportunity to gain practical hands-on field experience in the face of the theoretical disposition of our education system._
b. Our SHS Leavers, especially those from poor backgrounds, will get and save some money from their monthly allowance for their own upkeep, i.e., start a small business, further their education, etc.” He said.

However, Mr Fenyi said this should rather be a long term plan and effectively communicated to stakeholders.

”National Service cannot be a temporary replacement for the classes and knowledge our children have lost in school.”

”Obviously, a lesson not taught in Form 3, cannot be taught during national service. How then does National Service replace Form 3 class, for example?” He asked.

”Rather, the SHS duration, especially this year, should be extended from 3years to 4, if we really want to make up the “knowledge” loss. If the going gets unmanageably tough, this academic year can be quashed so that it is restarted in August/September. This will result in a one-year extension of the school duration for all levels, i.e., primary to SHS.” He indicated.