The first conference of Heads and Chaplains of second cycle and tertiary institutions of the Evangelical Presbyterian (EP) Church has ended in Ho with a call on education managers to break new grounds in the field.
The call is expected to place new responsibility on school managers to make the necessary inroads in modern education to help students become innovative and live morally upright lives.
Rev. Emmanuel Antwi-Tumfuor, the National Director of Evangelism, E.P Church, Ghana who spoke extensively at the confab, urged school administrators to support implementation of Ghana’s free SHS policy and explore the transformational power of education.
He also called for adoption of strategies for conducive teaching and learning environment, and establishment of dedicated guidance and counseling units in schools. He said there was the need for education managers to roll out programmes that would include; motivational speakers to help inspire students to pursue their chosen careers.
Principals, Head teachers, and Chaplains from various E.P Church institutions attended the conference which was on the topic: “Breaking new grounds revisited. Now is our turn: the role of the Headmaster and Chaplains.” Rev Antwi-Tumfuor noted that it was important for school heads to consider breaking new grounds and tapping the positives of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) to facilitate academic achievements of students.
“I want to pose this question,” he said: “why has it become necessary to break new grounds.” He said: “The feeling I get is we want to be innovative in discharging our duties as Heads and Chaplains, to enable our students to study hard, come out with flying colours and to exhibit high level of moral uprightness in all endeavours.
He noted: “Gone were the days when members in our various communities could go to sleep, because our students came out well disciplined, respectful and ready to serve the nation diligently. “There is no doubt in my mind that we are dealing with a generation which is in a hurry to succeed through fair or foul means and this is a real challenge to schools authorities.
He added: “We are in a generation where the youth have a lot of opportunities through ICT, particularly, the internet but unfortunately these opportunities are being abused with no sense of shame.” Instead of the young people today tapping into the rich benefits of internet and its associated social media to help in their studies, he said, “sadly, some of our students are rather using it for fraud and occult activities.”
“Is it proper to say maybe we have failed as school authorities to help our students to explore the ICT for national good or they are just not prepared to listen to us,” Rev Antwi-Tumfuor quizzed. Interestingly, there have been occasions where the young ones jokingly put it, he said: this technology was not developed in our time so they the young ones rather should dictate to older generation how to use it.
The Rev, again asked: “Is that not a disaster looming at us and will explode with catastrophic consequences for moral uprightness in our country.” “The bitter truth is that, before we admit students to our institutions, they are already exposed to a lot of this on the internet,” he added.
“We therefore have the herculean task to guide them to use this ICT resource responsibly.” He said: “Let them know and appreciate the fact that, through the internet and with innovative Apps and through hard work, people have become successful entrepreneurs. “The apps developed through responsible use of ICT has made some people billionaires, because their apps are helping solve major societal issues.
“Let us break new grounds by getting our students to be passionate and explore ICT positively in an entrepreneurial way to create jobs. “Let us break new grounds for our students to know that today’s behavior to a large extent will define their future.” He said the church believed in the philosophy that people needed to be helped to unearth their potential to contribute qualitatively to society’s advancement.
“Let us break new grounds by creating the learning environment that will inspire our students to appreciate their leadership role for national development,” he added.