Following the emergence of COVID-19 in Ghana, many groups of people have been affected by the lockdown and restriction of movement amongst other directives by the Government. One of such groups hardest hit is the Private School Teachers.
Douglas Archer, a member of the leadership of GNAPST told Hot fm 93.9 in an interview that, some of their members have not been paid March 2020 salaries and there is no assurance for that of April. He continued that they had families and children to take care of and called for government to come to their rescue.
The operations of private schools are dependent on the payment of school fees which parents cannot pay in the lockdown period as their wards are at home hence the inability of schools to pay their employees.
In a recent development, proprietors of primary and secondary schools in Ghana are calling for the suspension of their SSNIT contributions to the social security of their employees following the closure of schools as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak.
The Ghana National Association of Private Schools (GNAPS) has mentioned that not only are their members unable to pay salaries, they are equally unable to make statutory payments in respect of SSNIT.
Mr Archer expressed the GNAPST was hopeful of good news from the president in his 7th COVID-19 address to the country.
On the brighter side, despite being under lockdown, teachers are doing their utmost best to ensure the education of their students. Most schools have created WhatsApp groups in a bid to reach out to their students. Others, equipped with IT infrastructure have opted for virtual classrooms as a means to reach their students. There are also a number of measures yet to be employed by teachers to bridge the teaching and learning gap during these times.
Unfortunately, the public sector schools cannot boast of such achievements. Although the Government has put in commendable measures such as iCompus online learning and GL TV, there is still much to be done as many cannot access the system due to rejection of registration details. Others, in villages and remote areas, on the other hand, have no means to access these platforms.