The four major teacher unions in the country have issued a warning to the government that they will take matters into their own hands if the government continues to refuse them access to three important educational bills currently before Parliament for consideration.
The bills are: The Pre-tertiary Education Bill, 2019, Education Regulatory Bill, 2019 and Complementary Education Bill, 2019. These bills have all been submitted to the Education Committee in Parliament for consideration.
The Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT), National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT), Teachers and Educational Workers Union (TEWU) and Coalition of Concerned Teachers Ghana (CCT-GH) say they do not have access to the bills and have not been properly consulted before the legislation went to the Parliament.
Addressing a joint news conference, the unions alleged that the Ministry of Education has refused to provide any of the Unions with a copy of the bills, in spite of several requests since 2017.
“We are by this press conference notifying Parliament and humbly requesting for the suspension of the three bills and asking that copies of the bills be made available to us for our the study, analysis, and required inputs before the bills would commence,” she stated. ‘
GNAT President, Philippa Larsen demanded the immediate withdrawal of the bills, cautioning that should Parliament or government ignore their request and push it through with their numbers, leadership of the Unions will not be able to control the actions and inactions of members.
GNAT, NAGRAT, TEWU and the Concerned Teachers Ghana, are demanding access for critically analysis and thorough debate to inform their input for possible review, rejection or adoption.
President of CCT-GH, King Ali, described as unfortunate, the sector Ministry’s penchant for ignoring critical stakeholders in its rush to introduce policies. The unions say should their demand fail, the Ministry must blame itself for any consequences. This latest complaint is coming close in the heels of a similar attempt by the Education Ministry to ignore important stakeholders such as teachers when it tried to controversially sneak in the much-talked-about Comprehensive Sexuality Education (CSE) curriculum flagged as a Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) agenda.