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Prof Kwesi Yankah Has Said It All

botchway July 5, 2018

The Ministry of Education, according to a GNA report, has directed the National Council for Tertiary Education (NCTE) to review its stance on D7 and E8 grades awarded Senior High Students, and submit a report about the possibility of getting students with such grades admitted into the universities.
Professor Kwesi Yankah, Minister of State in charge of Tertiary Education, who disclosed this, bemoaned that many students could not pursue their academic ambitions and had become street hawkers due to the stance on credit passes in Mathematics and Science.
“Take the example of a candidate with D7 or E8 who has not failed in Mathematics and Science, anyway, seeking to go to the university to do history, or a subject in Humanities and social sciences that will need little mathematics.
“Let us encourage those who are aiming at mathematical sciences or engineering, and insist that they get credit passes before they move on. But, let us not insist on credit for those whose future studies have very little to do with mathematics,” he added. The Chronicle agrees perfectly well on the stance of the Minister on the subject.

As the Minister himself pointed out, the education of many Ghanaian youth has been truncated with this monster of getting credit passes in mathematics and science, which are all core subjects.  English is part and parcel of all the courses run by the universities in Ghana, therefore, if English Language is made mandatory, The Chronicle does not have any qualms with that.

We do not, however, see the wisdom in forcing students who are going to read history or humanities to pass mathematics and science before he or she is given the opportunity. It is instructive to note that some of the students coming from affluent homes, travel abroad, especially, to US and Canada, and gain admission to universities over there, after being denied admission into Ghanaian universities because they could not pass mathematics.

Interestingly, some of these students manage to climb the education ladder and even become medical doctors and return to Ghana to practice. We welcome them and even give them preferential treatment, because they are US or Canadian trained medical doctors.

Meanwhile, if their parents did not have the resources, their God-given talents would have been wasted, because they did not pass mathematics at the Ordinary Level.

Many Ghanaians have failed to climb up the education ladder because of this caveat, but, over the years, no senior government officials have recognised this and advocated for the abolishment of the mandatory requirement.

Good old Professor Kwesi Yankah himself has lectured at the University of Ghana, Legon, for many years and rose through the ranks to become the Pro Vice Chancellor at the same university, but this good idea never crossed his mind at the time.

We, nevertheless, commend him for starting the crusade to have this ‘clause’ removed from our educational system to pave the way for each and every Ghanaian child to have access to university education.

After all, America, the leading economy in the world, is not implementing this rigid policy, yet it is still at the top, when it comes to modern development.

We need to learn from them and stop destroying the future of our youth.

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