Africa Education Watch has commended the police for taking action against the Headmaster whose students drowned after he had sent them to his farm.
“It is unconscionable that just one school day before the commencement of this year’s Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE), a headteacher would mobilize 30 students, including BECE Candidates from his school to work on his farm,” the think tank said in a statement.
“We commend the swift action of the GES and the Ghana Police Service to enforce existing rules and the law,” it added.
The headmaster, Emmanuel Changer on Friday, November 12, 2021, sent 31 Junior High School students to his farm and on their return, the boat they were travelling on capsized in the River, leading to nine students losing their lives.
22 students were able to swim across to safety, and nine others perished in the water.
Mr. Changer has since been charged with manslaughter.
Following the incident, Africa Education Watch urged the GES “to provide the necessary psychological and other support to the affected parents and families.”
It further condemned the use of students “for any form of economic or domestic activity by teachers, especially where it affects their health or interferes with instructional and learning hours in and out of school.”
The think tank acknowledged that the GES’ Code of Conduct frowns on the use of students for work by its staff, with or without the consent of their parents.
Moving forward, Africa Education Watch urged the GES to put in place a system to receive complaints on the issue.
“We call for the setting up and publishing of complaint phone lines at all GES Offices to enable parents report offending staff for punitive action,” it said.