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Regional News of Sunday, 29 November 2015

Source: citifmonline.com

Convert polytechnics into universities en-bloc – Rector

Rector of Bolgatanga Polytechnic, Dr. Mba Atinga has appealed to government to consider converting all polytechnics en- bloc into technical universities instead of piloting the policy.

Government announced that it will from September 2016 convert polytechnics into technical universities.

The report of the technical committee on the conversion had recommended that any qualified polytechnic should be offering a minimum of four Bachelor programmes in Science and Technology based disciplines.

The committee further recommended that lecturers in such polytechnics should have both academic and professional qualifications and heads of departments should be senior lecturers with PhD.

Meanwhile according to Mr Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, Deputy Minister of Education (Tertiary) only five out of the ten polytechnics in the country qualify for the conversion.

But a speech read on behalf of the rector by the vice rector of the Bolgatanga polytechnic, Dr. Samuel Alnaa at the school’s matriculation ceremony appealed to government to address the deficiencies associated with the implementation of the policy rather than denying some polytechnics the opportunity.

“We are girding our loins for the conversion to technical university and have put in place, the drawing up of syllabi for Bachelor of Technology programmes as this will enable us stand in readiness to run degree programmes.”

He said the competition for students into tertiary institutions is fierce, “therefore if we lose out on this conversion, the repercussion for our increase in enrolment drive will be unpleasant.”

“Government should use the report of the technical committee that evaluated the Polytechnics for conversion into Technical universities as a basis for determining the deficiencies in Polytechnic education in Ghana and to address such deficiencies for en-bloc conversion rather than use the report as a criterion for selecting some Polytechnics for conversion in phases. Government should upgrade all Polytechnics into the status of Technical universities and allow the deficient polytechnics to apply to the accreditation board to assess the institution before giving it the mandate to run any of the degree programme,” Dr. Atinga stated.

The Polytechnic during the 2015/2016 academic year admitted 694 students comprising 504 students for tertiary programmes with 39 enrolled in Bachelor of Technology and 190 students for non-tertiary programmes.

The school also runs Diploma in Computerized Accounting, Diploma in Banking Technology and Diploma in Business Administration as newly introduced non-tertiary programmes