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Education Programmes Must Be Consistent – Bishop Gyamfi

The Most Rev. Matthew Kwasi Gyamfi, President of the Ghana Catholic Bishops’ Conference and Bishop of Sunyani Diocese, has called for consistency in the country’s educational programmes to propel development.

He highlighted the crucial role of educational regularity in national development, saying reforms in education often failed to achieve lasting impact due to changes in government leadership as lack of continuity hinders progress and undermines the effectiveness of educational initiatives.

Bishop Gyamfi  made the call at the 47th Speech and Prize Giving Day celebration of the Sacred Heart Senior School (SEHASS) at Nsoatre in the Sunyani West Municipality.

The celebration was on the theme: Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics (STEAM) Education and Attitudinal Change: The Wheels to Sustainable Development in the 21st Century.

The Bishop while acknowledging the importance of STEAM education raised concerns about the sustainability of such programmes in the long term.

He stressed the need for a national commitment to maintain and support educational initiatives to ensure lasting impact and meaningful progress.

The nation’s development could not be achieved through constant changes in educational policies and programmes without a coherent and sustainable approach, he said. 

He called for a collective effort to prioritize consistency and continuity in education to drive meaningful and lasting development in the country.

Bishop Gyamfi explained that it was always good to revise programmes, but radically changing brings about stagnation, which leads to continuously moving back and forth with programmes which were not beneficial to the nation.

He reiterated the significance of properly planning STEAM education to ensure a clear direction for the country and avoid potential discrepancies in its outcomes.

The Bishop stressed the need for the country to clearly define its programme direction, starting from early childhood education through Basic School, Senior High School, and tertiary institutions, and ultimately guiding graduates to address the country’s needs effectively.

He underscored the necessity for the country to establish specific targets by defining programme and policy directions through a strategic approach to outline the country’s intended path, goals and methods for the education system to follow, ultimately leading towards achieving targeted objectives.

Bishop Gyamfi endorsed STEAM education as the foundation of innovation and progress in the modern world, saying any nation failing to invest in that area was destined for failure.

Rev. Sr. Benedicta Uzokwe, the Headmistress of the School, announced that the current student population was 1,390, consisting of 485 males and 905 females.

Out of the number, 1,175 were boarders, supported by 90 teaching and 47 non-teaching staff.

Sr.  Uzokwe said: “STEAM education does not only impart knowledge but also nurtures critical thinking skills essential for addressing the complex challenges of the 21st century.”

She underscored the significance of effective Information Technology tools for achieving desired outcomes in the current educational landscape where students were expected to engage in research, projects, and problem-solving within their communities.

She also emphasized the need for attitudinal change, asserting that embracing a positive and growth-oriented mindset was essential for maximizing the benefits of STEAM education and fostering overall growth and development.

Sr. Uzokwe said the school was challenged with inadequate accommodation for staff and students, a lack of water storage facilities and disturbance from youth from the town day students.

Other challenges were the abuse of mobile phones on campus, absence of transportation for the headmistress and shortage of security staff and labourers.

Several deserving teachers, non-teaching staff members, students and groups were recognised and rewarded for their exceptional dedication and service during the event. GNA

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