New Term, No Textbooks for Public Schools, Yet Parents Are Excited

New Term, No books, Yet Parents "Enemies" Are Excited

Yes, it is a New Term, No books, Yet Parents “Enemies” Are Excited… Are you one of them?

The second term of the 2022 academic year had started yet, our public schools are yet to be provided with textbooks however, parents whose wards attend public schools are excited their children will be leaving home.

Africa Education Watch in 2021 stated that teachers have been forced to get their own materials to teach over the lack of textbooks. This is the reality even today.

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Why do we need textbooks? According to Deccanherald  “Textbooks help teachers and learners in this regard. They play a vital role in the teaching-learning process. They provide the basic framework within which much of the classroom activities occur and also give every child the best possible opportunities for learning”

Ghana, Ministry of Education, Ghana Education Service, Parents, and other stakeholders know the above too well but… The first factor that the country failed to consider is planning. We never planned and only jump-started the rolling out of the new curriculum.

The truth is no one cares about whether public school children and their teachers have textbooks or not. No, we all do not care and are not bothered enough.

What does it mean to care?  When you care about something, you give it all the serious attention and consideration, you will take the risk, invest time and effort to get it done, fixed,  or do something correctly to avoid damage or risk. As a nation, we do not care. We do not see the risk it poses, and probably our teachers in the classrooms are not angry enough about the lack of textbooks to match the new curriculum.

If the government had decided to provide schools with just English and Mathematics textbooks in year 2 of the curriculum, and Science in year three of the newly introduced curriculum, we will not be here now with nothing to show for it.

Our entire education system is on autopilot now at the basic level and especially in our public schools.

Schools have reopened and the legitimate questions concerned teachers, parents, and other stakeholders should be asking include, “what textbooks will these learners and teachers be using to learn while their colleagues in private schools already have access to textbooks and are making progress?”

Our parents whose wards are in public schools see nothing wrong with their wards attending basic school without textbooks for three years. If you are not worried about this and your ward’s education, you are an enemy to the education of the child.

Free education at the basic level is destroying the very foundation children should be provided with. The absence of textbooks in public schools does not help anyone.

In the absence of textbooks, we are only frustrating the efforts of teachers in public schools who do everything they can under the sun to provide tuition in their respective classrooms every minute, hour, and day.

The provision of textbooks does not seem to be a priority of the government. Certainly not. If it was, the government would have raised the needed fund to provide these books. It has been nearly a year since the contract was given to the publisher to produce the needed textbooks for the government for onward supply to schools.

However, we are yet to get the books to classrooms where they are needed. Timelines given for the books to be made available by the Ministry of Education have all been propaganda and failed promises.

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Just as parents think free means the absence of textbooks is a minor issue, teacher unions have become dead silent on the matter. None of the teacher unions in Ghana is putting any form of pressure on the government to speed up the process. As to whether the teacher union can tell the work in progress regarding where we are with respect to the production of the textbooks or whether they have any report on work done so far by the publishers who were given the task to produce the books for schools is another matter.

The 2022 academic year will end without a page of a textbook in our classrooms. The government does not care in the right sense of the word “CARE”. The Ministry of Education has not shown leadership enough to prove that it is truly worried about the over three years’ situation of overseeing basic education without textbooks.

The Ghana Education Service whose work will be improved, effective, and efficient with the supply of these books is so quiet about the matter. The truth is it does not care either. Parents whose children attend public schools do not care at all.

Can you imagine the reaction that will greet a call for parents whose wards attend public basic schools to provide their wards with textbooks for the rest of the academic year? In fact, they will rise against the needful call and give a thousand and one reasons why the supply of textbooks should be the burden of a government that is cash-strapped. In fact, they do not care a hoot about their children learning without textbooks.

We salute teachers who have had to go through all the difficulties to get relevant materials for each lesson. The impact of this policy on schools without textbooks will be seen in the near future. If your ward attends a public school, and you have not been sincerely worried about the practice for the past three years, you should bow down your head in shame because you are an enemy to your ward’s education.

If we should ask the GES and the MoE and their leadership when the textbooks will be ready, the answer will be another date and promise which may not materialize.

“Government acknowledges the need for textbooks in implementing the new curriculum and is working around the clock to supply textbooks to our basic schools. The procurement processes are ongoing,” This was the Minister of Education, Dr. Adwutum in December 2021. We are in Term 2 of the 2022 Academic year, where are the textbooks?

It is time for those in leadership and for that matter in charge of our education to wake up and be counted. Solve the basic problems facing education in this country. Parents whose wards are in public basic schools need to wake up as well and be more responsible. Go to your ward’s school and find out the books your ward needs to make learning more effective and do something about it.

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The New Term has commenced, and it will end without the textbooks being supplied by the government. Yes No books, Yet Parents “Enemies” Are Excited. Let us be responsible and get the textbooks for our wards who are studying in public schools.


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