“Education will not give one the chance to escape poverty but it will help fight poverty from one's community “ Julius Nyerere.
Mavis Abban writes;
Over the years some African scholars and critics have pointed out some anomalies in Ghana's educational system as being antiquated, primitive, colonial and backward, treating students as depositing agents than humanizing them. Ghana's educational system to some extent can be described as what Paulo Freire calls the 'banking system' since it merely treat students as receiving and depositing agents than as active agents. The use of bank in this piece of writing is highly metaphorical. Banks are known to be solely in charge of keeping monies and we in turn withdraw it when the need arises. Such has been the structure of Ghana's educational system. It merely treats students as depositing and receiving agents. It's an educational system that treats students as subordinates and teachers as masters and the sole repository of knowledge. Teachers come to the classroom adequately prepared and ready to pass any form of knowledge to students without any hesitation. Students in turn absorb all that they are taught by the teacher hook, line and sinker and reproduce it in examination for what we term certificate to the neglect of the development of students creative skills, abilities and talents. True education must however involve student in the classroom; they must be allowed to contribute ideas, suggestions, criticisms to issues being discussed in the classroom, true education must make students active not passive agents by the absolute involvement of students in classroom affairs.
Gloria Bassaw writes;
We do not in any way seek to chastise and to dent the image of Ghana's educational structure but to rather critically point out some of the things worth noting. As described above, Ghana's educational system sees students as depositing agents and that partly if not wholly explains why we have so many university graduates yet more problems. The educational system sees students as passive agents with extraordinary powers of memory who can memorize concepts and theories and reproduce it when the need arises. As if that is not enough, even the foundation upon which the educational system was built including the nature of curriculum is entirely antiquated and backward with continued over reliance on theories to the neglect of practical form of learning, thwarting the need for students to reason logically and think critically. In Ghana even the construction of roads is in most instances done by foreign engineers and contractors. One would ask as to whether our engineers are still in existence. The truth of the matter is that these engineers have imbibed theoretical learning to the extent that employers including the government doubt their enormous skills and talents. In other words, the policy makers and government officials do not have faith in the educational system and hence they resort to the services of foreign engineers.
Mavis Abban writes;
We must all note that the function of education is to teach students to be creative, harnessing their talents and gifts for national development and such is very possible. The only remedy to this disturbing 'banking system' of education being practised in Ghana is for school administrators, heads, and teachers to consciously work towards the humanization of students rather than 'itemizing' them. Instead of treating students as passive and depositing agents, they must be seen as active and creative agents whose ideas matter to the world at large. Teachers must note that they are not the sole repository of knowledge but must rather see themselves as aiding in the development of active agents. When humanization of humans is achieved, then we would say that a true revolution has occurred in the antiquated and traditional system of Ghana's educational structure.
This article is a collaborative effort of two students reading Masters in Educational administration at the University of Cape Coast.