Friday, 07 May

Free SHS: 28 E-blocks, 539 infrastructure projects completed – Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu

Caretaker Finance Minister Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu

A total of 539 projects out of 1,119 senior high school infrastructural projects have been completed to accommodate the increased enrollment of Free SHS students, caretaker Finance Minister Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu has said.

Delivering the 2021 budget and economic statement to Parliament on Friday, 12 March 2021, the Majority Leader said in addition, the “government completed 28 Community Day Senior High Schools (E-Blocks) under the Secondary Education Improvement Programme (SEIP)”.

“Mr Speaker, the implementation of the Free SHS programme has resulted in increased demand for secondary education”, he observed, adding: “The total number of beneficiaries for the 2019/2020 academic year was 1,200,580 students”.

The government, he noted, “has invested a large amount of resources to increase access and improve quality of TVET education by expanding infrastructure through the construction of new institutions and upgrading of facilities in existing technical universities as well as technical and vocational institutes”.

In line with the commitment to ensure adequate logistics for effective administration of schools and educational directorates, the Minister of Parliamentary Affairs said the government procured and distributed 840 pickup trucks and 350 buses.

In addition, he added, 2,000 motorbikes were distributed to Circuit Supervisors to enhance monitoring in their line of duty.

With basic education, the Suame lawmaker said “in recognition of the important role of infrastructure in the quest to provide basic education for all children, a total number of 195 basic education projects were completed in 2020”. I

This year, he said, “the government will continue with these ongoing infrastructure projects”.

“Mr Speaker, the government, in 2020, absorbed the examination registration fees for the 403,878 candidates from public Junior High Schools across the country. In 2021, the registration fee for 416,066 candidates from public Junior High Schools will also be absorbed”.

Concerning tertiary education, he said to make colleges of education freely accessible to all eligible students and train teachers to drive quality education provision, an amount of GHS78,857,120 was disbursed to a total of 47,135 teacher trainees in all public colleges of education for the second semester of the 2019/2020 academic year.

“In 2021, an amount of GHS171,241,500 will be paid for the first and second semesters of the 2020/2021 academic year”, he added.