AN ANALYSIS OF SENIOR high school TEACHERS' PERSPECTIVES ON GHANA'S EDUCATIONAL REFORMS ( CASE STUDY OF WINNEBA SENIOR HIGH SCHOOL, GHANA)
1.1 THE STUDY'S BACKGROUND
Education is the most powerful development instrument; it involves careful administration, planning, adjustment, improvement, and comparison of historical educational systems to current educational systems, as well as predicting of future educational, technological, socioeconomic, and other needs.
As a result, adapting educational institutions to fit social expectations and aims is a significant problem that must be carefully considered. Education still need attention in light of the quickly changing world, particularly at the beginning of the twenty-first century (Executives Online Interim Management 2004).
Education includes teaching and learning certain abilities, as well as something less concrete but more meaningful. It also has an impact on cultural transmission from generation to generation. Education necessitates the application of pedagogy, a body of theoretical and applied study on teaching and learning that draws on a wide range of disciplines, including the humanities, science, and technology.
Human education begins at birth and continues throughout life; but, for some, the difficulties and tribulations of everyday life provide far more instruction than traditional schooling (Wikipedia, 2007). It entails the individual's knowledge, sound judgment, and mature wisdom. It is the application of education to a body of study that spans several disciplines, including science, humanities, and others.
There are three stages of education in Ghana: primary, secondary, and tertiary. The first cycle includes the basic levels from nursery to junior secondary school. The second cycle includes Senior High Schools and Technical Institutes. Tertiary education includes universities, polytechnics, colleges of education, and nursing schools.
According to Credaro, educational institutions, like all other businesses, require continual monitoring to identify possible areas for development (2001). Educational changes, on the other hand, are usually handled poorly, resulting in massive waste of cash, human resources, and unfulfilled potential. Reforms include a wide range of topics and affect every area of our life.
Consensus on the nature of the proposed change is often unstable at best and illusory at worst, as is the case with all non-trivial reforms. Reforms that require a change in teaching methods or a reconsideration of what is valued are difficult to execute (Passey and Samways, 1997).
Education is the cornerstone for community development. A well-educated population contributes to a better quality of life. This appears to have prompted governments and nations to invest heavily in education, as well as reform it, in order to gradually improve citizens' lifestyles. Education reform is a planned program or movement aimed at bringing about a systematic change in educational theory or practice across a community (Wikipedia, 2007).
Beginning with the colonial era, successive governments have prioritized public education in order to encourage the nation to react to the demands of the global economic system. Global educational institutions, like any other businesses, require frequent monitoring to identify opportunities for future growth. Educational advancements, on the other hand, are frequently executed poorly. This results in enormous financial and human resource waste, as well as possible loss.
people, and particularly employees, appear to be resistant to change. Employees appear to believe that change will result in the loss of their jobs, status, or social security, as well as a great deal of misery. Most of the time, the initial effects of change on employees, leaders, and performance are negative. Among these include fears, tension, dissatisfaction, and an aversion to change.
As a result, most people react adversely to change rather than seeing it as an opportunity to progress. This frequently occurs when there is little knowledge about how change will affect people's specific circumstances, such as chores, workload, or duties. These raise serious concerns for policymakers and management (Recklies, 2001).
We meet issues every day; how we respond to them determines whether we succeed or fail. Personnel are in charge of putting policies proposed by policymakers during educational reforms into action, which is critical. Policy and reform implementation comprises a number of challenges that must be overcome.
Because educational institutions are made up of individuals, they will inevitably confront challenges from their students. Change management is a critical issue that must be managed discretely by management to ensure the attainment of stated goals and the application of policies.
Some of the educational problems are as follows:
l How to deal with change and innovation in the classroom;
l Adjusting to a new curriculum;
l Teacher professional development
l Experienced educators who are progressing to management positions
Preparation of Teaching and Learning Materials
l Organization and planning;
l Partnership and collaboration are essential.
l Evaluation and dissemination
People are resistant to change for a variety of reasons, including:
Anxiety over the unknown:
l Miscellaneous duties
l Loss of social standing;
l Investigating new possibilities;
l An old system is preferred over a new one;
I'm just not ready to make the jump to a new system yet.
Ghana has undertaken substantial educational reforms since its independence. What reasons inspired these reforms, and how have these various educational innovations affected students? Have we made any progress as a country on these reforms? In light of these factors, the researchers undertook this project.
According to Credero (2001), educational institutions are organized at many levels, ranging from a single classroom supervised by a single teacher to a group of classes controlled by a Head Teacher or Executive Teacher to a whole-school structure monitored by the principle. A School Board is in charge of both government-sponsored and independent or private schools (Board of Governors).
1.2 THE PROBLEM'S STATEMENT
When an organization's current condition prohibits it from servicing consumers efficiently, developing for the future, or capitalizing on a new venture, change must come rapidly. When habits, procedures, and structures are competitive and productive, they can help an organization's strength. As a result, it is vital that changes be made on a regular basis to maintain the organization current with current trends.
In Ghana, each decade appears to have seen one or more educational innovations. Despite being rigorously designed and heralded as the mother of all solutions to the country's problems, flaws emerged almost soon after they were implemented.
Teachers appear to be unhappy with the adjustments and have pointed out faults. Effective transformation, according to Lervim, as cited in Fry, Stoner, and Hatwuck (1998), needs people to unfreeze or break away from their current cognitive habits and behavior. We will see change when we adopt new attitudes, ideals, and approaches.
Education reform requires a shift in the current structure. Since independence, Ghana has experienced far too many reforms, and the implementation of these reforms looks to be causing citizens fear and confusion. Education reform needs a transformation in the current system.
Despite the fact that every educational reform implemented from the colonial era till independence has been complete, the public has had grounds to criticize the reforms. Various initiatives have been established to improve the country's educational quality, according to Antwi (1995). The first program was introduced in 1852 by the newly founded British colonial authority in order to provide better education for the residents of the Gold Coast's Castles and Forts.
The question that must be addressed is, “What is the source of all of this educational reform?” According to Education Agenda (2008), when launching the current reform on April 11, 2007, President Kufour stated that teacher quality is critical to the implementation of the reform program at all levels, thus the government's commitment to improving working conditions for teachers to do their best. The President went on to remark that no amount of money spent on facilities will help achieve the reform goals unless teachers at all levels of education embraced the reforms.
The President's remark implies that the effectiveness of the entire reform is dependent on the presence of a well-prepared and motivated teacher. The accompanying statement emphasizes the significance of teachers in educational development.
A one-on-one interview with teachers after the reform found that many of them did not understand why the reform was required. It was also revealed that some persons had failed to educate themselves about the new legislation. The question here is, what impact do instructors have on reforms? What caused previous changes to fall short of expectations, forcing more frequent revisions? How does teacher education affect reform?
1.3 OBJECTIVE OF THE STUDY
The study's overarching purpose is to examine senior high school teachers' perspectives on educational reforms in Ghana. The study is specifically designed to;
Investigate the training programs provided to teachers in Senior High Schools when educational reforms are implemented.
Investigate what teaching-learning materials are made available to schools in order for instructors to carry out their duties efficiently.
Examine whether infrastructure development aids in the implementation of educational changes.
1.4 QUESTIONS FOR RESEARCH
The following research questions guide the study's objective:
When educational changes are implemented, what training programs are provided to instructors in Senior High Schools?
What teaching-learning materials are made available to schools so that teachers can carry out their duties effectively?
Did the construction of infrastructure aid in the implementation of educational reforms?
1.5 THE STUDY'S IMPORTANCE
The study's objectives were to establish what motivates educational reforms, what should be done to ensure success, and how reforms should be executed. It was also to investigate the training programs put in place to reform our educational system. Infrastructure development to support educational reforms, as well as the creation of teaching and learning materials, and contributions to the existing literature
1.6 STUDY OBJECTIVES
The investigation is limited on the Ghanaian government's educational reforms. The research will ignore other sectors influenced by educational developments, such as book creation and academic program length. This project will be limited to the teaching staff of Winneba Senior High School in the Effutu Metropolis of Ghana's Central Region.
1.7 STUDY LIMITATIONS
When conducting research, the possibility of encountering challenges exists. This scientific undertaking is fraught with difficulties. The researcher did not meet the head of the target institution since she was on a national assignment. Due to their teaching schedules, the researchers were also unable to meet with all of the respondents at the school. Some respondents were apprehensive to take the survey. The researcher had to delegate the questionnaire gathering to a volunteer staff member.
1.8 TERM DEFINITION
Perception is the way something is perceived, understood, or interpreted.
Educational reforms include any deliberate changes in the way a school or school system operates, ranging from teaching approaches to administrative processes.
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AN ANALYSIS OF SENIOR HIGH SCHOOL TEACHERS' PERSPECTIVES ON GHANA'S EDUCATIONAL REFORMS ( CASE STUDY OF WINNEBA SENIOR HIGH SCHOOL, GHANA)