It will cost government more money if the closing time for basic public school in the country is extended, the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT) has said.
The Minister of Education, Dr. Matthew Opoku Prempeh has complained about the closing time within Ghana schools and has called for an extension of the normal 2pm closing time to 4pm.
“School closes too early in this country. At 2:00pm, parents from farms are not back and parents working at the public service are not back from work, so why can’t schools close at 4:00 pm,” he posited at the National Education Sector Review forum held in Accra recently.
The Minister also said the time was not favourable for working parents and guardians and also complained about the standard of education in the country.
But speaking on Eyewitness News on Thursday, the General Secretary of GNAT, David Ofori Acheampong said they have not received any official proposal from the Ministry to that effect.
He also suggested that government should engage the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission on the issue to ensure that allowances of teachers are increased to reflect the new closing period if approved.
“…If today government thinks they would need to extend the programme, it is a simple, let them table it before the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission because it comes with financial burden on government. They have the responsibility to commit government to pay for extra duty with allowances and we will sit down and talk. When we discuss and they agree to pay us so much for additional two hours of our service we have no problem. So all these noise about us doing this or that, government has not tabled it before us,” he added.
Mr. Acheampong noted that currently, “the agreement we work with is that basic schools must do nine periods, JHS must do ten periods, SHS must do eight periods, differentials thirty or forty minutes with five minutes intervals as interchange into the next period.”
“We do not prescribe the curriculum for education in Ghana. It is prescribed by the research department of the Ghana Education Service and they allot the time for the various categories of teachers to teach…And we are supposed to do our work within that period and it is enshrined in our collective agreement with government,” he added.