Use youth day to reflect on education – YEfL urges

Tamale- This year’s International Youth Day should be an opportunity for the country to reflect on progress made at ensuring quality education and equal educational opportunities for all, Youth Empowerment for Life (YEfL), an NGO, has said.

The YEfL said this year’s International Youth Day presented the country the opportunity To reflect on our progress as a country in ensuring that our education becomes all inclusive, accessible and of quality with equal educational opportunities and facilities as enshrined in the constitution as well as the Sustainable Development Goals.

This was contained in a statement issued in Tamale on Saturday by YEfL, signed by its Technical Advisor on Youth, Advocacy and Gender, Mr Alhassan Abdul-Ganiyu and copied to the Ghana News Agency.

The International Youth Day is marked on August 12, every year, and this year’s celebration is on the theme: Transforming Education.

The statement said As we commend government on its progress in providing access to basic and secondary education, especially with regard to Free Senior High School (SHS), we are concerned that it is not doing well on the provision of quality education and adequate infrastructure, which will affect the economic prospects of the youth and further widen the inequality gap.

It said Among young people in Ghana, inequality is evident in educational outcomes and tends to favour young males over females, urban over rural. While just under half of pupils that qualify for SHS nationally, almost two in every three pupils qualify in the best performing region (Greater Accra), whilst only one in four pupils qualify for SHS in the poorest performing region (Upper East).

It said this set the stage for regional disparities among young people in the country adding Young people in disadvantaged areas (especially in rural northern Ghana) continue to miss out on the political and economic growth of the country due to widening gap in income between the wealthy and the poor.

It added that Unemployment is unreasonably high as there appears to be a mismatch in skills and education. On this occasion, we applaud the youth of northern Ghana and of the world for continuing to hold their governments accountable to ensure improved educational outcomes.

The statement implored government to consider the introduction of entrepreneurship in educational curriculum to promote opportunity recognition and creation at the early stages to address the unemployment rate among the youth.

It also called on the National Youth Authority to expedite action on revising the Youth Policy for guidance on youth development in the country.

Source: Ghana News Agency