President of the National Graduate Teachers Association says the report establishing that 54.1% of boys in Junior High and Senior High Schools use cannabis is a reflection of the drug menace in the society.

Speaking to Joy News’ Emefa Apawu on The Probe, Angel Carbonu said many of the students get access to the substances they abuse from the communities they come from.

“If there is increase drug use in our schools, it is a reflection of increasing drug use (in societies), the availability of the drug, the level at which the drug has permeated our society, (and) the nonchalant attitude of authorities to ensure that we seal the passages through which drugs are channelled through,” he said. 

Mr Carbonu explained that with advocacy for the decriminalisation of marijuana on the rise, the clampdown on spots with illegal substances have declined exceptionally, giving people a chance to abuse as much as they want to.

“So once these things are in the society, the easiest target is the unsuspecting student who becomes prey to the activities,” he added.

His comment comes after a report by the Consultative Committee to Combat Drug Menace in Schools established that about 54.1% of boys in Junior High and Senior High Schools use cannabis.

According to the survey which was carried out by the Committee, 59.9% of boys tend to use cigarettes more in schools.

It further established that 36% of boys and 32.1% of girls use alcohol, while 34.3% of girls use shisha. Also, it was recorded that 72.7% of girls use pain relievers in schools. 

Among other things, Mr Carbonu said it has become difficult for teachers to monitor the activities of students following the increase of students in schools.

“If the population of the school 20 years ago was 500 and you had 20 teachers, and the population today is 1000 and you still have 20 teachers, you don’t expect that level of supervision to be effective as it used to be,” he told Emefa Apawu host of the show.

He thus urged the Ghana Education Service to revamp its guidance and counselling system to help the school check some of these activities.

Mr Carbonu stated that it will be efficient and productive if GES visited schools and assess the guidance and counselling departments of the schools, “properly.”

“There is a need for us to take a second look at the counselling situation in our schools, from where I sit and from what I have observed it is nothing to write home about,” he added.

Meanwhile, the Ghana Education Service has promised to implement tighter regimes to deal with drug and substance abuse in schools following the research.

Speaking to JoyNews’ Emefa Apawu, Director-General of the GES Prof Kwasi Opoku Amankwah, said that his outfit is yet to review the report, however, they are ready to look at the recommendations given and take steps to ensure that the relevant measures are put in place.

“So let us spend some time to study the report, look at what they actually came out with, and see how best we can tighten the measures we have and any other recommendations they have so we can improve on the system,” he said.