Oral Statement at 37th Session of the UN Human Rights Council

Item 6 – UPR outcomes: GHANA

15 March 2018 

Mr President,

Edmund Rice International values Ghana’s commitment to improving its standard of compulsory education. Ghana has a Free, Compulsory Universal Basic Education (FCUBE) Policy which was extended to Senior High School students on 12th September 2017. However, to ensure that all students benefit equally from free education, the government should invest more in public schools, to improve the standard of infrastructure and teaching. Edmund Rice International recommends  that the State take necessary steps to further motivate teachers, such as, provision of additional training and accommodation assistance, especially for those working in schools in rural areas.

Implementation of the education policy (FCUBE) requires additional funding for necessities such as uniforms and text books, as these costs prevent families sending their children to school. These costs exist in the public and private sectors. Parents also have the perception that private education is of higher quality than public education. Edmund Rice International recommends that the State regulates the tuition and supplementary fees charged by all schools and so create equal opportunities for families from all socio-economic areas.

Ghana’s ongoing commitment to increase enrolments and to improve school attendance through strategies including capitation grants, the School Feeding Program and the Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty program is to be commended. However, despite these efforts, in 2017 UNESCO reported that over 600,000 children and 200,000 adolescents were not attending school. Edmund Rice International recommends the enforcement of the national attendance strategy as stated in the education (FCUBE) policy to reinforce accountability and enhance the monitoring of attendance. This will assist with measuring desirable outcomes of Sustainable Development Goal 4 regarding quality education.

Thank you.