Accra, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo on Thursday made a heartfelt plea to the Presbyterian Church to take a leading role in the early childhood education sector to build the attitudes and characters needed to build a successful nation.
He said schools established by churches have a proven track record of moulding the mind-set to the lives and moral fibre of many Ghanaians, stressing that those traditions of discipline and hard work that characterised the Presbyterian schools of old are needed in the country now.
President Akufo-Addo made the appeal when he addressed the 8th General Assembly of the Evangelical Presbyterian Church, at the Trinity Theological Seminary, Legon- Accra.
The theme for the meeting is :’Breaking New Grounds.
He said with religious groups concentrating on the tertiary sector in the provision of education, it is important that they get back to the early childhood education sector, where their expertise is sorely needed.
The Evangelical Presbyterian Church, like its counterpart, the Presbyterian Church of Ghana, used to be very active in this sector. There is an obvious and great need in this sector, and we seem to be failing our young people. There can be no denying that the most critical stages of education for any child are the early years, the President said.
I am aware that the growth of the Church is, quite properly, a big consideration in the decisions that you take. The theme of this General Assembly is ‘Breaking New Grounds’, and I offer you the famous saying of St Francis Xavier: ‘give me a child until he is seven, and I will show you the man’. In other words, catch them young, catch them at pre-school and at kindergarten, and you have them for life, he added.
President Akufo-Addo said there is the urgent need for ‘solid Churches’ to step up and take the children until they are seven, and mould the men and women that would build a successful Ghana.
He said Presbyterian schools were distinguished by the behaviour of their students, and by the orderly nature of their campuses, saying, They stood out, and we all took pride in them.
The President urged the Evangelical Presbyterian Church to avail itself of the opportunity to play a leading role in the early childhood education sector, because the values of the Church are desperately required in this critical sector.
He urged the Church to imbue into the youth the sense of discipline and communal responsibility as was done in times past.
I ask you to capture the spirit you were known for, and let us build the self-confident and prosperous Ghana we all desire, he added.
Source: Ghana News Agency