EFFISCO: Model school in the making
By Sebastian R. Freiku
The Effiduase Senior High and Commercial School (EFFISCO) was selected as one of the schools under the model school concept introduced by the Kufuor administration to ensure equilibrium in the education sector.
The first phase of the project could not be fully implemented before the exit of the Kufuor administration.
Notwithstanding this, Effisco might soon pass the mark and become a fully fledged model school in the Sekyere East District with the level of transformation under the headship of Mr. Kwadwo Opuni-Boachie, who, with his 33 years of teaching experience, believes that education should be prioritizsed as the only foundation upon which a progressive and prosperous society can be built.
Effisco was established by one Mr. E. R. Addow, alias Kwaku Mosi, on May 12, 1943, and has passed as an ordinary educational institute until Mr. Opuni-Boachie assumed the headship in October 2009 to revive it into a science-based school.
The school has a student population of 2,622, with 98 teaching, as well as 104 non-teaching staff. Nineteen of the teachers, including the Headmaster reside on campus.
Today, Effisco is experiencing a new era. The marked transformation which is currently occurring at the school is as a result of the joint effort of the school management and the Parent Teacher Association (PTA).
This collaboration has provided 9-unit flats for the teachers, as well as two 6-unit classroom blocks for the students.
The school management, with the support of the PTA, has as well provided a 16-unit water closet and an additional three poly tanks for water storage purposes.
They have also provided three deep freezers for the school kitchen, and five boreholes, two of which are mechanised.
The management and the PTA have procured a heavy capacity standby generator for the school. They are also responsible for the 50-capacity ICT Centre with Internet connectivity.
A students’ canteen, expected to be completed by December, is under construction, while a magnificent board room with an office for the Board Chairman and Chairman of the Old Students Association, is almost completed.
Currently, the management and the PTA are negotiating with the Building and Road Research Institute (BRRI) of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) to complete an abandoned 6-flat teachers bungalow, which was estimated to cost GH¢55,000 in 2011.
An abandoned one-storey Ghana Education Trust Fund (GETfund) girls’ dormitory project, initiated by a former member of parliament, Mrs. Grace Coleman, in 2002, has also been revived by the school management and PTA, and is nearing completion to help absorb the growing female population.
These provisions, all in a spate of three years, which have added to the unprecedented growth of the school, are, besides the boys and girls dormitories, dining hall, an assembly hall and library provided by the government for the school under the model school concept.
The 70th Anniversary, which was launched in November last year, is fixed for February 23, 2013, under the theme: “The role of old students in delivery of education.”
The occasion will mark the school’s first ever Speech and Prize Giving Day, and also showcase the potential of the school.
The wind of change has been attributed to the open door and participatory administration of Mr. Opuni-Boachie, who is said to happily consult everybody (from management, PTA, teaching and non teaching staff to students and labourers).
Mr. Opuni-Boachie has ensured that teachers are redeployed to maintain quality teaching, which has yielded positive results, evidenced in the last WASSCE, in which the school recorded almost 100%, as 500 students out of 594 candidates had passes in eight subjects, with 78 passing in seven subjects. There were only two absentees (not failures), the Ashanti File learnt.
In the ensuing year, management intends to provide a befitting staff common room and see to improving the road network in the school.
The secret for the unprecedented growth of the school is explained in the use of its Internally Generated funds (IGF) for projects instead of relying on the government.
Headmaster Opuni-Boachie explained that the IGF is not generated from any commercial activity, but that the PTA and students have been sensitised to see the need for contributing their quota to the growth of the school.
“The PTA is assisting the school because they see the judicious way monies collected are used. Students also see the need, first, to learn and to pay fees, while parents see the need to pay for their wards interests and welfare,” Mr. Opuni-Boachie confided in the Ashanti File upon enquiry.
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