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General News of Thursday, 21 February 2008

Source: GNA

Education fair opens

Accra, Feb. 21, GNA - Professor Dominic Fobih, Minister of Education, Science and Sports, on Thursday said government's aim of embarking on various interventions in the educational sector was to help refocus and redirect the system to remove all obstacles to the acquisition of quality education.

He mentioned such interventions as capitation grant, school feeding programme, the President's Special Initiative on Distance Learning, teachers' study leave with pay, education decentralization by devolution and the recent Education Reforms.

"All these are to help train the citizens to become more enterprising and adaptable to the demands of a fast changing world driven by modern science and technology," Prof Fobih said in a speech read on his behalf by Dr Anthony Adomako, Coordinator, Capacity Building Programme, Ministry of Education, Science and Sports, at the opening of the first ever Education Fair in Accra.

The three-day fair dubbed: "Golden Jubilee Education Fair" is being organised by I-Texon Ghana, a management solution firm in collaboration with the Ministry.

Over 40 tertiary institutions, including private and public universities, polytechnics, teacher-training colleges, health training institutes, allied health sciences, ICT institutions and career guidance and counselling centres are participating in the fair.

Prof. Fobih commended organizers of the fair for their initiative and stressed that more of such collaborations were needed to evaluate the kind of education provided for the youth to ensure that "products of our new system would be well equipped with necessary competencies and skills for their future careers".

According to Prof. Fobih, tertiary institutions in the country lacked the capacity to absorb all products from the second cycle schools. However, a lot of other chances of some of these institutions were not utilized due to lack of publicity about the existence of such equally good opportunities. He expressed the hope that the fair would provide a platform for interaction between stakeholders to seek solutions to problems encountered in acquiring tertiary education for the youth. Mrs Catherine Haizel, Chief Executive Officer of I-Texon, said the fair was aimed at addressing the educational gap of inadequate information on programmes and courses offered in the tertiary institutions to the populace. She said education must be given the centre stage in the country's development planning policies and budget, not only by the government but also by private companies and individuals. "It is our firm belief that if we all get involved in shaping our direction in education and also focus the minds of the implementers of the policies on what the needs of society in education are, success will be ensured," Mrs. Haizel stressed.

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