Inadequate and delayed food supply to Senior High Schools have been a major challenge inhibiting the smooth implementation of the government’s Free SHS policy.

The Heads of Assisted Secondary Schools (CHASS) says the struggle to feed students affects the effectiveness of managing their schools.

CHASS President, Alhaji Yakubu Abubakar, says schools also have to contend with inadequate furniture and dining halls.

The Minister of Education has met with CHASS and Heads of Technical and Vocational Schools in Kumasi.

The meeting is to allow the managers of schools to engage the Minister on challenges in running schools for possible redress.

President of CHASS, Yakubu Abubakar, says proper planning and strict adherence to food supply schedules to senior high schools is the way to go.

“It has been a week since school reopened. We have gotten food items in our schools. Though we should have received them before school reopened.

We have made authorities aware that we should properly plan for schools to receive food items before reopening. We would not head schools to be concerned with food when they should be focusing on students’ academics.”

Alhaji Abubakar also lamented inadequate furniture and dining facilities for students.

“Some schools are unable to admit fresh students because they have no furniture. Beds in various dormitories, benches and tables at the dining halls are in short supply.

“We have drawn the attention of the authorities to these issues. Previously, parents were assisting us in purchasing them, but with the inception of free SHS, the burden is now on government.

The Minister has assured us that all these items will be brought to the schools before April 4,” he said.

The Minister of Education, Dr Yaw Osei Adutwum, says the issues raised are much concern to the Ministry. He promised immediate action to address them.

“We are coming up with new ways to ensure they get the resources they need. We have set up a system that will enable us to track the food distribution to the various schools. This year, we will give out the list of food items they will be receiving. So they will know the number and quantity,” he explained.

The Minister will be meeting with Heads of Technical and Vocational Schools on Tuesday.