And What’s The Purpose of Free SHS?
We’ve heard from the Minister of Finance that the Government is planning to stop children whose parents do not pay tax from accessing secondary school education. This is a very worrying and disappointing development because many children whose parents are very poor would be negatively affected should the policy be implemented.
We were indeed very happy when the Free SHS policy was introduced here in Ghana because we felt it was a great opportunity for children from poor homes, especially girls to have secondary education.
But now if government wants to limit it to only children whose parents are tax payers, according to what the Finance Minister said in his presentation of the 2019 budget; then we are back to square one.
We believe this kind of policy will be discriminatory and a VIOLATION of the right of the Ghanaian child to access quality education without impediments from anyone.
“Everyone has the right to education” that is what the first line of article 26 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights states. Nowhere in article 26 is it stated that only tax payers’ children can have secondary school education.
If education is a right and not a privilege, then we cannot and should not base access to secondary school education on a child’s parent having Tax Identification Number (TIN).
Introducing the TIN policy in our educational sector will only undermine the whole idea behind the introduction of Free secondary education – which is “not to leave any child behind or at home”.
This is a bad idea and should NEVER be implemented in Ghana.
WRITTEN BY: ROSE MARY KAYI