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GES to expel SHS students for sexual offenses, others in new code of conduct

SOURCE: Myjoyonline

The Ghana Education Service (GES) has released a comprehensive 24-page document that establishes standards for student behaviour in Senior High Schools (SHS). 

This initiative by GES aims to foster discipline and create a conducive environment for effective teaching and learning, as outlined in its recently released code of conduct.

Misconducts such as sexual offenses, physical and psychological abuse, acts causing harm, involvement in cultism, gang affiliations, and the possession and use of weapons are grounds for expulsion for SHS students.

The sanctions detailed within the document are not mere slaps on the wrist. 

Depending on the severity of the wrongdoing, students could face consequences ranging from counseling sessions to the extreme end of the spectrum, which is dismissal.

The National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT) and the Council of Parent-Teacher Associations have welcomed the document. 

However, they believe that the GES should provide clarity on some of the codes that appear ambiguous.

Speaking to JoyNews, the Vice President of NAGRAT, Joseph Anaaba expressed satisfaction with the imposed sanctions but called for clearer descriptions in certain areas. 

He emphasised the need to specify offenses such as absenteeism, skin bleaching and low haircuts, stating that defining the corresponding punishment would prevent discretionary decisions.

“So if we talk about haircuts, yes, they said very low. There may be discrepancies in the description of the low, so there is a need for the Ghana Education Service to come clean as to the level of the lowness that they have mentioned. 

“Where we have issues is some of the offenses where they have not been specific. For example, a student who does not come to school or does not attend gatherings, they have not specified the number of times or periods that if a student did not attend, punishment should be meted out to the student,” he said.

On her side, the National Public Relations Officer for the Council of Parent-Teacher Association, Felicity Ahafianyo commended GES for addressing student misbehaviour. 

However, she urged further clarification, particularly regarding the evaluation of skin bleaching, expressing concerns about the potential challenges in determining the degree of skin bleaching.

“We know most of our pomades that we have nowadays have some sort of bleaching ingredients in there so I don’t know the degree at which they are going to determine that this skin is being bleached,” she said.

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