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PRESS CONFERENCE ON THE PERENNIAL LEAKAGE OF EXAMINATION QUESTIONS SET BY THE WEST AFRICAN EXAMINATION COUNCIL (WAEC)  

PRESS CONFERENCE ON THE PERENNIAL LEAKAGE OF EXAMINATION QUESTIONS SET BY THE WEST AFRICAN EXAMINATION COUNCIL (WAEC)  

Today’s Press Conference by the National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT) is to express profound disappointment at the shambolic performance of the West African Examinations Council (WAEC) over the years, and to make some recommendations.  We wish to bring into particular focus, the circumstances that led to the cancellation of five (5) papers in this year’s Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE). It must also be noted that the recently written WASSCE was not speared its share of the irregularities when a paper for 2016 was administered in 2015 ahead of schedule and outside the syllabus.  The situation is extremely disturbing considering that it is fast becoming an annual ritual.  Year in, year out, questions are leaked, papers cancelled and examinations rescheduled.  For how long should this mess be allowed to go on?

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We agree that some pupils, students, teachers and indeed anybody could be culpable for the leakages.  We are however certain that most leakages take their source from WAEC itself.  It is unfortunate that WAEC staff are highly insulated and hardly suffer any serious penalties from their wrong doings.

It is our very strong conviction that WAEC is able to afford these unpardonable in efficiencies because of the monopoly it enjoys. It is clear that whether their services are good or not and whether we like them or not they are the only one we have. WAEC has become an untouchable bully that pushes bad services down our throat while no one dare question them.

 

NAGRAT as a Teacher Union and a major stakeholder in education is very much worried about the trauma that pupils, students, parents and teachers go through when this unnecessary ritual is performed. The stress involved in preparing to rewrite a paper that has just been written is an ordeal everyone abhors.  Very high transport and out of station costs are incurred anytime examinations have to be rewritten.  In all such instances WAEC pays no compensation to the negatively affected people. Again WAEC as an institution suffers no collateral damage.  It is high time that WAEC is made to bear all cost emanating from its inefficiencies.

With these negative developments, pupils and students usually are unable to put up their best, resulting in poor performance.  Many of them get their education truncated while others are unable to be placed according to their real strengths.  Expectedly, the poor performances are hurriedly put at the doorsteps of teachers.  We in NAGRAT can no longer take such underserved blame silently.

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NAGRAT therefore recommend that

 

  1. The monopoly of WAEC as the sole examining body at the Junior and Senior High Schools should be discontinued. Government should encourage and promote the creation of alternative examination bodies. This is seen in many advanced countries and can be done in Ghana. We believe this will help promote the integrity of our examinations and certificates.

 

  1. Acknowledging that this unfortunate situation will plunge most of our students into traumatic condition; the need for counseling becomes imperative, and this is the time we call on all teachers to rise and be counted. Let us not sit down and claim that we have finished with these candidates. Let us mobilize them, and take them through counseling and psyche them to boldly confront the difficult days ahead. Parents and all other stakeholders must also do their best to encourage these children to confidently face the days ahead and with such renewed hope, the sky will be their limit.

 

  1. We call for the dissolution of the Board for WAEC and the appointment of a more efficient one in its place.  We also strongly request that the Head of WAEC be made to step aside while investigations are being conducted into the leakages. They must go because they have failed Ghanaian teachers, they have failed Ghanaian parents. They have failed our children, they failed the nation.We all trusted them and handed a major determinant for the future of our children to them but they failed. They failed to bring WAEC up to speed with 21st century virtual securities and hence they cannot be made to continue.

 

  1. Finally we call on government not to leave investigations of this matter in the hands of WAEC as has always been the case.  It is therefore welcoming news that government had decided to use state apparatus to investigate this heinous crime against Ghanaian children, and our society.

 

 

We wish to conclude that let no one found culpable in this condemnable act be spared. Be he a teacher, a pupil, a parent, a WAEC staff or whoever.  NAGRAT will be monitoring closely the outcome of this investigation and we hope that never again will this scandal ever recur in our beloved country Ghana.

 

Thank you.

 

 

 

Stanislaus P. Nabome

General Secretary

 

 

 

 

June 19, 2015

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UNRESOLVED GRIEVANCES OF THE STAFF OF THE GHANA EDUCATION SERVICE

NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF GRADUATE TEACHERS (NAGRAT) - GHANA National Secretariat P. O. Box NM 329 Accra –Ghana 4th July, 2014

Tel:  233-0302-403454

www.nagrat.org E-mail:info@nagrat.org   THE CHAIRMAN NATIONAL LABOUR COMMISSION PRIVATE MAIL BAG ACCRA       THE CHAIRMAN GHANA EDUCATION SERVICE COUNCIL P. O. BOX M 45 ACCRA     Dear Sir,

 UNRESOLVED GRIEVANCES OF THE STAFF OF THE GHANA EDUCATION SERVICE

We write to complain about the way and manner government and the Ghana Education Service management have handled grievances of the staff of the service. From 2010 to date, the unions of the Ghana Education Service have raised concerns on grievances that have been left unresolved by the Ministry of Education, the Ghana Education Service, the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission and for that matter government. These grievances have been the major reasons behind various strikes, demonstration; and petitions, and yet their redress remains far from sight. Sir, you would recall that in May 2014 the grievances listed below caused the National Association of Graduate Teachers to serve notice of its intention of industrial action on the National Labour Commission and the subsequent declaration of industrial action. They are:
  1. Second Tier Pension Scheme
  2. Payment of Outstanding Incremental Credits for 2011 and 2012
  3. Non-payment of Transfer Grants and T&T Allowances to Teachers Transferred from 2010 to date
  4. Three (3) Months Pay Policy on Newly Recruited Staff, Promotions and Re-engagement
  5. Revision of WAEC Invigilation Allowances.
Consequent upon that industrial action, a meeting was convened between the government team and the Teacher Unions on 15th May, 2014 to resolve the issues relating to teachers of the Ghana Education Service. At the meeting various agreements were reached on the issues and a Communiqué signed. (Vide copy for your study and use). We wish to bring to your notice that government and the GES management have failed to adhere to the tenets of the Communiqué they signed. A case in point is that on the payments of not more than three (3) months’ salary arrears. The agreement is that District Directors of education would submit completed templates for payment of the remaining arrears to Regional Directors latest by 16th May, 2014 and that payment are expected by the end of June 2014. Sir, we are now in July and most of the templates are still at the District Directorates. Payments for those that have been submitted to headquarters have not been made. On transfer grants, the Communiqué mandated District Directors to collate data on qualified beneficiaries by end of May 2014. Stakeholders were to be invited upon receipt of the data for a verification and validation exercise for payments to be effected. We have moved through June to July, 2014 yet the Stakeholders’ meeting has not been convened. Needless to say, the verifications and validation exercise has not taken place and a date for payment not known. Closely linked to the payment of transfer grant is the staff deployment and rationalization exercise. Government and the GES management agreed to suspend the exercise and source funding for the payment of transfer grants and T&T of teachers transferred since 2010. As of now the outstanding grants and allowance have not been paid yet teachers are being transferred under the exercise Collection of data on teachers who were transferred has been done for the group of 2014 to the neglect of all those transferred from 2010 to 2013. On the strength of that Communiqué and the genuine desire to create the congenial climate for further negotiations, NAGRAT called off its strike on 21st May, 2014. On the same day, the National Labour Commission (NLC) invited the parties to a meeting aimed at resolving the grievances. It is pertinent to point out that while NAGRAT and the FWSC attended the meeting other parties namely the Ministry of Education, the Ghana Education Service, the Ministry of Finance, and the Ministry of Employment and Labour Relations failed to honour the invitation. The NLC scheduled another meeting for 18th June, 2014. The National Labour Commission notwithstanding issued some directive to be responded to by 11th June, 2014 prior to the meeting of 18th June, 2014. (Please find copy attached) Sir, it is interesting to note that the Ministry of Education and the Ghana Education Service which had invited NAGRAT to a meeting on that day postponed the meeting indefinitely when NAGRAT called off the strike. That meeting has not been reconvened to date. This is a clear indication of the lack of commitment of government and the GES management to resolving the grievances of the Ghana Education Service Staff. When National Officers of NAGRAT reported at the premises of the National Labour Commission on 18th June, 2014, they were told that the meeting had been postponed indefinitely. It is almost three (3) weeks now and the National Labour Commission has left the issues hanging without any communication with the leadership of the Association. Sir, teachers are getting increasingly convinced that their grievances are systematically trivialized. We want to state emphatically that should any unpleasant outcome occur, teachers will take no share of blame. Their patience has been stretched to the limit and the disquiet is becoming alarming.   Yours faithfully,     Stanislaus P. Nabome General Secretary Cc:
  1. The Honourable Minister,
Ministry of Education Accra
  1. The Honourable Minister
Ministry of Employment and Labour Relations Accra
  1. The Honourable Minster,
Ministry of Finance Accra
  1. The Chief Executive
Fair Wages and Salaries Commission Accra
  1. The Director General
Ghana Education Service Accra
  1. The General Secretary
Ghana National Association of Teachers Accra
  1. The General Secretary
Teacher and Educational Workers Union Accra
  1. The President
Coalition of Concerned Teachers Accra
  1. All Regional Chairmen,
NAGRAT Regional Secretariat