Teacher Unions have finally come on track after goofing in their first letter to the Director General of the Ghana Education Service, which was copied to the Ministry of Education. Some nineteen (19) possible measures to curb the spread of the novel COVID-19 Pandemic have finally been made as a roadmap to the opening of schools.
The Unions, in a letter dated May 26, 2020, to the Director-General of the Ghana Education Service, Prof. Kwesi Opoku Amankwa and copied to the Ministry of Education have given some 19 suggestions categorized under two thematic areas.
The thematic areas include short and Intermediate terms as well as a medium-long term measure.
Responding to the GES request, the Four teacher Unions – GNAT, NAGRAT, TEWU and CCT indicated emphatically that though they were not in favour of the reopening of schools due to the current data on COVID-19 available to them, they wish to make the proposal to the Management of the GES should the GES decide to reopen schools regardless of the prevailing evidence of horizontal spread of the disease.
Short Term and Intermediate
According to the Unions, the following are the Short Term and Intermediate options available;
(1)All schools should be disinfected.
(2) Ensure that all Schools have good water and sanitation facilities.
(3) Improve Ventilation in all School facilities.
(4) All staff and learners should be tested before schools reopen and those with positive results should not be allowed entry into the schools.
(5) Commence reopening with only JHS 3 and SHS 3 Learners as a pilot for the reopening of schools.
(6) All schools should be provided with a thermometer Guns, Veronica Buckets and Hand Sanitizers.
(7) Reduce all class sizes to a maximum of 20 using all-round 1-metre distancing.
(8) Provide appropriate nose masks for learners and staff of schools.
(9) Assign Schools to designated health facilities.
(10) Develop new operational guidelines for schools under the “new normal”|.
(11) Provide appropriate technological tools for teaching and learning.
(12) Introduce a shift system at the Basic Schools.
(13) Provide Free Transportation for Learners.
(14) Decongest dormitories to maintain social distancing protocols.
(15) Provide Special Incentives for the staff of the Ghana Education Service
Medium – Long Term
(16) Expand and Improve existing Infrastructural facilities.
(17) Decongest dormitories to maintain social distancing protocols.
(18) Recruit more teachers to support teaching and learning
(19) Study the outcomes of the JHS 3 and SHS 3 pilot and use it to improve reopening of the entire school system.