The government of President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo will absorb the registration fees for some 416,066 candidates from the public Junior High Schools for the 2021 Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE).
During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, the administration absorbed the examination registration fees for the 403,878 candidates across the country.
The government is set to continue the initiative this year with some 12,188 more students benefiting compared to last year’s number.
This was contained in the 2021 budget presented to Parliament by Minister for Parliamentary Affairs and Government Business, Mr Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu last Friday.
He disclosed that in the quest to provide basic education for all Ghanaian children in recognition of the important role of infrastructure a total of 195 basic education projects were completed last year.
Government, he said, will continue with these ongoing infrastructure projects in 2021.
Mr. Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, who has been appointed Caretaker Minister for the Ministry of Finance explained that in line with President Akufo-Addo’s commitment to ensure adequate logistics for the effective administration of schools and education directorates in 2021, the government procured and distributed 840 pickup trucks and 350 buses.
“In addition, 2,000 motorbikes were distributed to Circuit Supervisors to enhance monitoring in their line of duty,” he said.
Speaking on the Free SHS programme and its implementation, he stated that the policy has resulted in a marked increase in demand for secondary education with 1,200,580 students benefiting from the policy for the 2019/2020 academic year.
“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.”
“In addition, the Government completed 28 Community Day Senior High Schools (E-Blocks) under the Secondary Education Improvement Programme (SEIP).”
The government, he indicated, has also invested a large number of resources to increase access and improve the 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.
To make the Colleges of Education freely accessible to all eligible students and train more teachers to drive the provision of quality education GH¢78,857,120 was disbursed to a total of 47,135 teacher trainee in all public Colleges of Education for the second semester of the 2019/2020 academic year.
The government in 2021 will disburse an amount of GH¢171,241,500 for the first and second semesters of the 2020/2021 academic year.