President Akufo-Addo has promised to ensure that the lives of teachers in the country are improved.
He said in addition to the 10% salary increment that the government approved in 2018 to take effect from January 2019 for all public sector workers including teachers, the government is paying teachers their salary arrears.
Speaking at the re-commissioning ceremony of the Bediako Conference Hall of the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT) Headquarters in Accra on Thursday, Akufo-Addo said the government is working to pay the teachers other allowances such as their travel and transfer grants that have been in arrears for the past few years.
“We’ve begun to improve upon the circumstances of our teachers. In addition to this year’s 10% increase in basic salaries for teachers, the government has begun to clear all arrears accrued between 2013 and 2016, owed teachers with regards to travel allowance, transfer grants. Presently, the government is no longer accruing arrears. We are putting in place measures to ensure that this situation does not reoccur,” Akufo-Addo said.
Akufo-Addo added that the payment of allowances in arrears will be completed by the end of March this year.
The recommissioned facility was originally commissioned in 1981, but had not seen a significant face-lift since then.
The face-lift which cost some GHc 7 million, has raised the Halls’ sitting capacity from 400 to 1,100. The Bediako Conference Hall, which also includes; a bar, restaurant and a hostel, has been fitted with amenities that make the facility disability-friendly.
President Akufo-Addo told the gathering that government was developing a comprehensive teacher policy based on UNESCO benchmarks to enhance the working conditions of teachers.
That policy would encompass nine components including recruitment and retention, teacher education, free service and in service, deployment, career structure, employment and working conditions, reward and remuneration, teacher standings, accountability and school governance.
Additionally, the government he said, was pursuing several reforms, including pre-tertiary curricular reforms, teacher education curricular reforms at the pre-tertiary and tertiary levels, and mainstreaming technical and vocational training and teacher education.
“These reforms form part of government’s vision to transform the country’s education system to meet the needs of the twenty-first century, and produce a skilled and confident workforce to drive the nation’s agenda for industrialization and modernization,” the President stressed.