Education

Teacher trainees chase govt over 7 months unpaid allowance; hint of potential food shortage

The Teacher Trainees Association of Ghana (TTAG) has voiced its displeasure over the seven-month delay in the delivery of their monthly stipend.

They have made hints that due to the non-payment of allowances, food shortages are expected to soon affect colleges.

Jonathan Dzunu, the national president, claims that trainees have not received any compensation since January 2022, which has had a significant negative impact on them.

While speaking to his peers at the 26th General Assembly of TTAG at St. Francis College of Education, Hohoe, he revealed the information.

The allowances paid with feeding grants as a component for the different colleges of education, Mr. Dzunu emphasized, are meant to lessen the enormous financial burden on teacher trainees.

They have experienced discomfort as a result of their delays, particularly level 400 students who will soon be leaving the schools.

The first semester and the first half of the second semester for level 100 pupils have been completed, he said, but they have not yet received payment.

“The level 200 and 300 students have completed the first semester in an equal amount and are moving on to the second semester, although they are not given any allowance money.

He bemoaned that life on campus without an allowance had become intolerably tough for them. “Considering the current economic turmoil in the nation, you can appreciate the hardships students are going through,” he said.

Mr Dzunu further revealed the school principals have been faced with tough situations as suppliers are not ready to give out food items due to debts owed. “Let me hasten to add that we are perfectly aware of the current economic and financial crisis in the nation. Nonetheless, the innocent teacher trainee should not be used as a sacrificial lamb.

If this is not adhered to, it will be tantamount to a poultry farmer whose chicken is stolen by a hawk and again throws eggs at the hawk forgetting that both come from the same poultry; Meanwhile, quality teacher education can help turn the economic fortunes of this nation,” he cautioned.

Although he applauded the Akufo-Addo led administration for restoring the allowance, he stressed that the problems needed to be examined and resolved.

In light of the historical context that led to the implementation of the allowance scheme and the positive impact it has had on teacher education in particular and basic education in general over the years, he noted, “It is our view that the colossal delay in payment of allowances is going to send the clock backwards and the little successes chalked as a result of the implementation of the teacher trainee allowance whittled away.”

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