The government has released about GH¢200 million to cater for the Free SHS feeding and other perishables to ensure the smooth running of Senior High Schools, the Minister for Education, Dr Yaw Osei Adutwum told the Daily Graphic.
“Part of the amount will go to the National Food Buffer Stock (NAFCO) to purchase food items, while some will go to the heads of Senior High Schools to cater for perishables,” the Bosomtwe Member of Parliament told the newspaper.
The remaining amount the Minister responsible for Education in the country indicated will cover part of last year’s arrears and other expenses such as uniforms, feeding for the boarding students and one hot meal for day students.
“For now, we are working out how much will be apportioned to each area. The most important thing is that the government has released GH¢200 million and this is good enough for me,” Mr Osei Adutwum said in an interview.
The teaching minister gave the assurance that more funds would be released in the course of the 2022 academic year, saying, “there are funds for the flagship programme and this tells you that the government is not broke.”
Asked how many prospective students are currently benefiting from the flagship Free Senior High School (Free SHS) program, he said there are approximately 827,193 continuing students in the second and third-year SHS.
According to him, a headcount at the appropriate will be conducted this semester to determine the exact number of first-year students who have enrolled. “An estimated 447,219 first-year students had so far enrolled,” Adutwum stated.
More than 1.39 million qualified BECE students the Education Minister has said are estimated to benefit from the Free Senior High School and Technical Vocational and Education Training (Free SHS/TVET) in the 2022 academic year.
In an interview with Kumasi-based Nhyira FM monitored by EducationWeb, he said the inclusion of TVET in the Free SHS program forms part of the government effort to ensure more students become beneficiaries of the flagship policy.
“A total of 1.39 million students are expected to benefit from the Free Senior High School and Technical Vocational and Education Training (Free SHS/TVET) in the 2022 academic year when the school placements are out,” Osei Yaw noted.