Government to establish girls STEM SHS in Accra

 The Minister of Education, Dr Yaw Osei Adutwum, says the government has allocated land for the construction of a girls STEM Senior High School (SHS) in Kpone Katamanso, Accra affiliated with the African Institute for Mathematical Sciences (AIMS).

The 12.6 acres of land will also be used for the construction of a world-class campus for AIMS to nurture Ghana and Africa's talented female students from SHS to tertiary in STEM-related fields of study.

The project, the Minister said, was part of the 11 model state-of-the art STEM SHS being built across the country to be equipped with 12 laboratories and a STEM pathway established in some existing SHS with four laboratories.

The Minister announced this on Saturday at the 9th graduation ceremony of AIMS Ghana, of which 37 students from 11 African countries graduated with a Master of Mathematical Sciences degree in Accra.

He said the government's agenda to promote STEM education was part of a grand plan to increase the Science Humanities ratio from the current 40:60 to 60:40 in favour of the Sciences.

Government priority in STEM education is part of Ghana's reform project to reposition the educational system to equip learners with the 21st-century skills to be fit for purpose.

It is also to prepare the critical mass of empowered Ghanaians for socio-economic transformation and become active participants in the 4th Industrial Revolution.

Dr Adutwum said Ghana's Gross Tertiary Enrolment Ratio (GTER) stands at 18.84 per cent, which fell short of the target of 25 per cent envisaged by the Education Strategic Plan.

He said the government had established the Open University Ghana to complement the efforts of the existing universities to increase the GTER from 18.84 per cent to 40 per cent by 2030.

A study conducted by Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development in 2012, shows that 60 per cent of the Gross Domestic Product of France, Norway, Switzerland and the United Kingdom is contributed by students who acquired tertiary education of over 55 per cent.

The Minister urged the graduands to put to good use the knowledge acquired and be innovative and identify challenges as an opportunity for solutions.

"AIMS Ghana has prepared you not just on the academic front but to play your part in the development of your respective countries. Your countries need your input and you must at every stage of your life play your part in turning Africa's challenges around for the better", he said.

Dr Prince Koree Osei, Centre President, AIMS Ghana, said the Institute since its inception in 2012 had graduated 324 students from 25 African countries of which 33 per cent were females.

The Institute, he said had built a research capacity in areas of opportunity for Africans in Pure and Applied Mathematics, stressing that the programmes were in line with the core objectives of UNESCO Category II Centre of Excellence and AIMS Global Network.

He said AIMS Ghana and the University of Energy and Natural Resources in June 2021 signed a Memorandum of Understanding towards the implementation of the Climate Change and Atmospheric Physics Programme.

He commended government and development partners for the support to the Institute and pledged to continue to strengthen its training and research programmes in Mathematical Sciences.

Ms Kati Csaba, the Canadian High Commissioner to Ghana expressed commitment to support AIMS to deliver quality education and evidence-based solutions to issues confronting Africa.

Ms Lydie Hakizimana, the Chief Executive Officer, AIMS Next Einstein Initiative urged the graduands to devote time to analyse the business environment, and develop a comprehensive business plan for their projects.

Mr Andrew Kwasi Boahen, the Overall Best Student on behalf of the students thanked AIMS Ghana and all who supported in the pursuit of their academic laurels and pledged to be critical thinkers and problem-solver.

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