The Ghana National Association of Private Schools (GNAPS) has petitioned government to consider absorbing salaries and allowances of private school teachers.
The petition became necessary after several failed attempts from GNAPS to get private pre-tertiary schools to reopen.
Speaking to GBC’s Mark Smith, the Acting President of GNAPS, Dr Damasus Tuurosong said the financial burden on owners and proprietors of private schools has become unbearable.
Dr Tuurosong said despite assurances by the National Board for Small Scale Industries (NBSSI) that 50 million Ghana-cedis had been earmarked to be quickly disbursed to private schools, the process has been fraught with delays thus compounding the problems of private pre-tertiary schools.
After Ghana recorded its first few cases of the coronavirus, government shut down schools. The move was to prevent the further spread of the COVID-19. The Acting President of GNAPS, Dr Damasus Tuurosong said this meant that from March, private pre-tertiary institutions have been unable to make any money to be able to pay their teaching and non-teaching staff.
Dr Tuurosong said when government announced the stimulus package; heads of schools were excited. He was however disappointed that processes leading up to the disbursement of the monies have been highly inconvenient thus the petition to government.
“We have petitioned government to take up the payment of some salaries or allowances. Another level of support we have been fighting for is that post COVID-19 our schools will never be the same again. So we are looking forward to having a conversation with government on how the cost of our operations can be reduced significantly. There are a lot of things we pay for,” he explained.
The Ag. President of GNAPS said for those in leadership positions, these times have proven to be tough.
“I do not even know I can say that the situation is peculiar to the Upper West Region. Nationally we are having the same complaints. I cannot count more than 5 members of our Association who have testified to receiving the support. Members are getting frustrated by the day. Some are even impugning some other motives that we have collected money from government,” he lamented.
Dr Tuurosong said for the schools across the country that have received the support, the amounts disbursed to them were not enough. Dr Tuurosong said GNAPS will continue to engage with government and other relevant stakeholders to find pragmatic solutions to the challenges.
Story filed by Mark Smith.