Dr. Yaw Osei Adutwum, the Minister of Education has disclosed that the country spent a colossal amount of money on the ‘Free SHS’ programme in its early years.
He said the New Patriotic Party (NPP) government led by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo spent a total amount of GHS 5,119,794,501.22 on the Free Senior High School Program.
Answering questions from ranking member for education committee Peter Nortsu Kotoe and other MPs in Parliament, Mr. Adutwum further disclosed the amount falls short of the over Ghc7 billion cedis approved budgetary allocation of the ministry for the program.
“For the period under review that is 2017 to 2021 the Ministry of Finance approved allocation for the implementation of the Free Senior High School Program amounted to Ghc7,623,783, 450.
“During the period under review the Ministry of Finance released a total amount of Ghc5,182,205,131.91 to the Ministry of Education for the execution of the free Senior High School program. The total expenditure for the period amounted Ghc5,119,794,501.20,” he stated.
Recently, the Education Minister warned that the government is considering closing down non-performing schools across the country.
He bemoaned how some schools consistently score zero to ten percent pass rate and their students graduate only to become a burden to their parents instead of furthering their education.
He added that the existence of the nonperforming schools is a financial burden to the government, so if they remain nonperforming, it only makes sense to close them down to avoid wastage of resources.
The minister commended the heads of TVET institutions and CHASS for their contribution to the transformation of education in the country. He went on further to pledge that his ministry will continue providing the needed resources to make teaching and learning effective.