A TOTAL of 10,751 teachers, out of the current 21, 554 in the Brong Ahafo Region are untrained, the Brong Ahafo Regional Minister, Mr Kwadwo Nyamekye-Marfo, has stated.
Mr Nyamekye-Marfo said the large number of pupil teachers in the region was a major contributory factor to the poor academic performance of pupils at the basic levels of education.
The unfortunate situation, the regional minister said, prevented a large number of them from progressing in their educational pursuit.
He said this at a symposium to launch the annual week celebration of the Sunyani Polytechnic branch of the Brong Ahafo Students Union (BASU) in Sunyani over the weekend.
The celebration was on the theme: “Brong Ahafo Region @50. The contribution of BASU”.
The regional minister tasked the various municipal and district assemblies in the region to sponsor more students to Teacher Training Colleges in order to come back and take up teaching appointments at the basic levels of education across the region to help reverse the unfortunate trend.
He stressed the need for assemblies that would sponsor teacher trainees to bond the beneficiaries, so that they would come back to serve in their communities after the professional programme at the college.
The regional minister appealed to all stakeholders in education in the region, especially the various traditional councils to consider establishing Educational Trust Funds to sponsor students from their areas to pursue higher education, to enable them contribute their quota towards the socio-economic development of the nation.
He stated that among the other roles that the various students unions in tertiary educational institutions across the country could play to reverse the trend was to conduct research to find out the reasons why the region had low number of students in those institutions and come out with the appropriate recommendations.
Mr Nyamekye-Marfo expressed concern about the high level of irregular migration among the youth from the region who used the desert to Europe for greener pastures.
He called for concerted efforts to arrest the situation, adding that the student unions should also conduct research into the situation and find out why most people from the region, especially the youth, embarked on such tortuous journey at the peril of their lives
He also called on the students union, which is a force to reckon with, to lead the fight against the spread of the deadly HIV/AIDS pandemic in the region, as well as other social vices that hindered the development of the region.
Mr Nyamekye-Marfo used the occasion to reiterate the call on all citizens of the region, both within and outside the country, to consider the year-long golden jubilee celebrations of the region as a rallying point to hasten the socio-economic development of the area.
He further implored them to market the area to investors as one of the viable investment destinations in the country, so as to create jobs for the youth.
The regional minister paid glowing tribute to the late traditional rulers for the gallant roles they played in the struggle for the creation of the region, which was then known as Western Ashanti.
He was also grateful to the various governments that had contributed towards the tremendous infrastructural development of the region, particularly roads, electricity and potable water.
The Sunyani Polytechnic Chapter President of BASU, Mr Ankomah Twene, had earlier in his welcoming address stated that the vision of the union was to unite all the alumni from the polytechnics and other tertiary educational institutions in the region, in particular and the nation as a whole, to uplift the image of the region.