General News of Monday, 4 December 2000
The new training policy adopted by the Ministry of Education and the Ghana Education Service (GES) for teacher training colleges will ensure that products of these institutions become more academically and professionally competent.
The Director-General of the GES, Professor Christopher Ameyaw-Akumfi said the in-out-in structure, among other programmes under the policy, had been designed to produce the type of teachers the nation needs. These were contained in a speech read for him by Mrs. Akua Debrah, Deputy Brong Ahafo Regional Director of Education, at the 19th Speech and Prize-giving Day of Berekum Training College on Saturday.
The college, which was established 48 years ago, last celebrated its Speech and Prize-giving Day in 1973. Prof. Ameyaw-Akumfi said the new policy entails rigorous training and that only those who can cope with this would be admitted. Under it, students will spend two of the three-year training course in the classroom while the remaining year will be for practical or professional work outside the college.
The Director-general stressed the need for teachers, as role models, to exhibit qualities that reflect the moral values of the society, be dedicated to duty and avoid sexual immorality and other vices.
Mr. Donald Adabre, Brong Ahafo Regional Minister, in an address read for him, noted that the education reforms had not been limited to the improvement of structures but also included training and motivation of teachers.
He expressed concern about the attitude of students who only use the training colleges as a "stepping stone" for admission to the university and other tertiary institutions, abandoning teaching mid-stream. Mr. Yaw Adjei-Sarkodie, Principal of the college, said in order to protect its image, laid down disciplinary measures had been rigidly enforced in line with the college's tradition of good character training.
He called for the co-operation of parents and guardians in efforts to produce morally upright and dedicated teachers to serve as role models to the children. Mr. Adjei-Sarkodie noted that students' unrest in the college two years ago had had adverse effects on academic performance, but said measures had been put in place to reverse the situation.
He called for assistance to provide the college with a modern library to replace the existing one, which accommodates only 25 students. The principal commended the government, individuals, public and private institutions for contributing towards the provision of a number of facilities to enhance academic work and life on campus.
Prominent among them, he said, is Asuo Bomosadu Timbers and Sawmills (ABTS) company, which has donated a 7,000-gallon capacity water reservoir to the college at a cost of 30 million cedis. Commissioning of the project coincided with the ceremony.
The managing director of the company, Mr. Ernest Apraku, was among deserving individuals, staff, workers, past and present students of the college who were honourd. Master Samuel Antwi, college prefect, announced that, as from next year, students would undertake income-generating activities to support the provision of needed facilities in the college