THE ALTERNATIVE EDUCATION.

Ghana has been tagged as the gate way to Africa and yet, though Ghana gained her independence in the same year with colleagues like Malaysia and the likes, Ghana keeps languishing behind like a cripple in a hundred metre finals. This though according to some connoisseurs could be due to the wrong prioritization of our educational system, thus neglecting the backbone of every viable economy, vocational and technical education. However, this article brings to bear our contribution to the decline of vocational and technical education and how we could have benefited as a nation.

It is interesting to note that our best brains are rather underutilized in so called prestigious forms of higher education.  The best students who are fortunate to make it to the senior high school levels are pushed to tertiary institutions where they make less use of their thinking faculty by following strict theories, cramming and reproducing already existing books and pamphlets in the name of passing examinations. On the other hand, these students whose academic faculties do not permit them to climb the academic calendar are pushed there. If students who have low thinking faculties are pushed to sectors where they are unable to use their brains effectively to create, how then can they make innovative products or even think of inventions. Meanwhile, our best brains are out in a recycled environment where they come out as graduates who can’t make any huge economic impact since they are not industrialized but rather theorized.

Another woe that befalls the vocational and technical sector of our educational diadem is the notion of “not prestigious “. Well, this is often perpetuated among the students and the media at large. One researcher observed that the media, students, and parents alike are responsible for this archaic induced slavery of thought. Through centuries, most governments have also failed to give vocational and technical schools more attention, hence they prioritize the mainstream Senior High Schools by putting up more infrastructure and equiping them with well furnished libraries. Sadly though, this cannot be compared to the state of neglect that is deliberately meted out to them. Vocational schools and technical schools are not added or are seldomly invited for programs such as the National Quiz. Yet, after ignoring them we expect them to come out with products that we have not invested in.

Last but not the least, we treat vocational schools as being a less important school meant for the academically weak students. Since it is not one of the priority of past and existing governments, these schools do not have an organised system of functional operation. The support system for these graduates are sometimes so inadequate that they do not make any huge impact in their society. Hence the general perception, vocational and technical schools are not important for their graduates just like those from the higher educational institutions. However, the system is so relaxed that we do not see the importance of these graduates hence, it’s a waste of time to be there.

All in all, our attitude towards vocational education must change else we will continue to see them through those myopic class of reasoning.  Always appreciate the brain drained unknown heroes that have been villified.

KOJO OFORI.

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