All schools, including private schools will participate in the National Standardised Test (NST) from next year, the Minister of Education, Dr. Yaw Osei Adutwum has assured.
This followed the successful implementation of the intervention in the public schools for this year.
The NST is an intervention introduced by the Ministry of Education to access the extent to which learners have covered the content of the teaching curricula approved by the Ghana Education Service (GES).
It provides an assessment targeted at measuring the proficiency of pupils at the basic level, especially in English and Mathematics.
Dr. Adutwum disclosed this in Accra on Friday when he addressed the media on a number of issues currently ongoing in the education sector.
He said the NST formed part of a number of interventions instituted by the government for the transformation of the educational sector.
The Minister said in all about 390,000 pupils from 14,883 public schools participated in the test and analysis of the results showed that the Ahafo, Bono East and Bono regions emerged tops in the maiden test which was limited to just primary four pupils.
“After the test in Mathematics and English Language, P4 pupils in the Ahafo Region posted the highest mean scores of 67 per cent in English and 58 per cent in Mathematics, while those in the Bono Region posted 65 per cent in English and 55 per cent in Mathematics, with those in the Bono East Region scoring 58 per cent in English and 50 per cent in Mathematics,” he said.
On the issue of textbooks, the Minister said suppliers had already commenced, however, plans had been put in place to ensure that all schools were supplied with their required textbooks by the close of the year.
He said the USAID was supporting with the printing of 3,742,624 textbooks and were ready for distribution.
The Minister also used the occasion to appeal to the media to guard against allowing themselves to be used for “proxy wars” but rather support in the effort to transform the country’s educational sector.
He said it was unfortunate that the media rather focused on the few negatives in the sector at the expense of the massive transformation currently ongoing in various divisions of the sector.
“This is the first bold attempt at total transformation and we are leaving no stone unturned in changing the education system of this country. I want you to partner with me on this great adventure.
I know as politician I have a very short life span, I sit here for a brief moment but while I sit here please partner with me, help me shift and change the paradigm so that no child will go to a school where they have a one percent chance of getting to the university. I need your help to shift the paradigm,” he said.
He explained that this was the first time after independence that a government had taken the bold step to change the education system to a better one and the President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo had reposed confidence in him to lead that charge.
Dr. Yaw Osei Adutwum who used the occasion to throw more light on the controversial Ghana Accountability Learning Outcome Project (GALOP) once again denied claims that an amount of $1.2 million, released by the World Bank for the project had been misappropriated.
He said the ministry indeed received the money as a grant from the World Bank for the project, but was under specific arrangement.
Dr. Adutwum explained that under the project, the ministry was to train a number of teachers before a certain amount of money would be disbursed and that was exactly what happened.
By Cliff Ekuful-ghanaian times.com.gh