A Deputy Ranking Member of the Education Committee in Parliament, Clement Apaak has called on the central government for testing of students in schools with cases of the novel virus.
According to member of the Education Committee, some of the schools must be closed down.
Mr. Clement Apaak speaking at the press conference at Parliament House questioned why the Government of Ghana is insisting to keep final year students in schools for them to compulsory write their final examination in these crisis “when they are not in the right frame of mind.”
“The situations in the schools not do augur well for effective teaching and learning”, Dr. Apaak said.
Mr. Apaak speaking at the conference said his call follows reports that six students of the Accra Girls SHS have tested positive for COVID-19 and the death of one student at the KNUST SHS in Kumasi.
President Akufo-Addo in one of his numerous nation’s addresses announced for schools to be reopened to final year SHS and JHS as well as form 2 Gold track students for them to continue with academic activities.
The President on March 15 directed for all schools to be closed after the country recorded a COVID-19 case on March 12 this year.
He said the students and teachers are not in a good frame of mind and if for nothing at all, “how do you expect the students to study under these conditions and to write exams?
Dr. Apaak also wondered why the government was insistent on keeping the students on the various campuses when people are aware that the pandemic has reached the schools.
He argued that if the cabinet can be suspended for two weeks in a roll because there is suspicion that the virus is present among high government officials, the same can be applied to schools affected by the virus.
He cited instances like Mr Kwaku Agyeman Manu, Minister for Health; Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh, Minister of Education; Mr Dan Botwe, Minister for Regional Reorganization; and President Nana Akufo Addo, who is in isolation for fourteen days.
“So why on keep the students on campus when they are aware that some of their colleagues have tested positive for the virus.
“Don’t they also deserve the same attention the high government officials are getting? That is why the parents are demanding their wards because they feel the state has failed to protect them.”
He said there was evidence that some schools only received their PPEs this week, fumigation for some schools took place when students have reported to campus, while other students were on campus for days before they were supplied with PPEs.
Dr. Apaak indicated that one of the requests by stakeholders including the Minority was for the government to conduct testing of schools, teaching, and non-teaching staff before allowing them to return to school.
However, the government ignored our request and went ahead and reopened the schools.
“Lo and behold, people are now seeing the consequences,” he exclaimed.