Executive Director of Africa Education Watch has said that the Free Senior High School programme is not properly positioned to serve as a hub for human capital development.

According to Kofi Asare, there is still an opportunity to make it more relevant to the workspace to ensure that graduates from even the SHS level are sufficiently resourced to make an impact in the job market.

He made these comments on the back of a statement by University of Ghana Economist, Dr. Ebo Turkson urging that the policy feeds into the human capital agenda to Ghana’s participation in the AfCFTA.

Speaking on the AM Show, Mr Asare agreed with the suggestion.

He, however, told host, Benjamin Akakpo that apart from it being a social intervention initiative, the Free SHS programme has not been properly positioned to be the hub of Ghana’s human capital especially at the pre-university level.

He further spoke about how some 90% of graduates struggle every year to get jobs, reiterating that the educational system, generally, is not living up to the expectations of human capital development and job-market requirements.

“We are producing more [graduates] than we even need, and we are struggling to find a place for them, so the Free SHS providing human capital for the AfCFTA, I don’t see,” he said on JoyNews.

He added there is an opportunity to properly position the Free SHS programme and make it more productive and technical-oriented instead of running a Senior High School system having only 6% of students being Technical and Vocational Educational and Training (TVET) students.

“We have to focus more on ensuring that we move our Free SHS system to the level where it becomes relevant to job-placement and job-creation,” he explained.

The Free SHS policy was implemented by the New Patriotic Party (NPP) on assumption of office in 2017 as part of the government’s manifesto promise to increase enrollment in the education sector.