Education: Disadvantages of the Double Track System

NDC’s promise to abolish ‘double track’ unrealistic, shameless

Disadvantages of the Double Track System is not easily noticeable if we refused to probe and only concentrate on the immediate benefits of today to parents and students. Double Track System disadvantages and this write up will attempt to unveil a few of them

Education around the globe has gone through various reforms and Ghana is not left out however, the woes of the Double Track System lives us with many unanswered questions.

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The Double Track System has introduced the shift system into the second cycle institutions hence graduates of Junior High School go to school in batches. While one track is at home, on vacation the other goes to school.

The reformation has been seen through curricular and attendance. Some few years back the Ghana education service adopted a system called the shift system, this was introduced to cater for all children of school-going age due to the inadequate school infrastructure such as classrooms in the country.

In Ghana, basic school is free and compulsory, so it’s an infringement on the right of the child for a parent to deny that child basic education. The shift system divided the students in most students every public school into two batches, that is, the morning batch and afternoon batch. The morning batch started classes from 8 am to 12 pm and the afternoon was from 1 pm to 4 pm. This system worked for a while but it was later found out that instead of making education accessible to all, it was actually breeding truants, so it was terminated and the normal school was reinstated and it has been so till now.

Negative effects of the DOUBLE TRACK SYSTEM on Education

Many have praised the government for rolling out the Double Track System which gives many BECE graduates the chance to have access to secondary education but, what is the quality of such a system? There are numerous disadvantages of such a system on students and the final outcome is likely to be impacted.

DOUBLE TRACK SYSTEM Encourages truancy amongst students

The double track system from a shallow point of view means good but a critical look at it show that it will promote truancy. Just like the first shift system where students who are found at home used the batch at home as an excuse, so will this, lazy students (if not always) belong to the batch at home and when it happens the effect is going to hurt the taxpayer whose will continue to pay for the service. Double trackers are spending less time in school now and that means fewer contact hours and more time to play.

Parents are spending more on education than before

When students vacate, they stay home for long hence to engage them in fruitful activities, parents pay more fees to enroll the wards in vacation classes with private schools. Some students are currently attending two different SHS. That of the government and a private school when they are on vacation. Parents are suffering in silence. Some of these children attend private schools as boarders and parents foot all these bills. which they don’t pay under the previous single track system.

DOUBLE TRACK SYSTEM creates an unfair system

If some students are enjoying a full term and others are not, is this fair to the child or the parents? Mind you the double track is not in all schools. Some schools are running normal school schedules (Single track) and they are expected to go through the syllabus within the stipulated 2two and half years and sit for the same exams as those attending double track school and those in the private institutions.

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DOUBLE TRACK SYSTEM is Producing Uncooked graduates

As it stands now, we are faced with graduates who don’t know jack about their course of studies and these are graduates who attended normal schools, the failure rate at the SHS under the single track schools that that had thre terms in a year and spent more time in school. What do you think will be the fate of these ones who have been given less time to do more work, they may pass alright but will they be able to prove themselves and meet up with the demands of the tertiary institutions? No, and that’s because they are uncooked.

DOUBLE TRACK SYSTEM is encouraging laziness

The time students spend at home as vacation is enough to turn a serious student into a lazy one. One might say that classes are organized for these students but truth be told only few communities are running government initiated extra classes, most of these extra classes organized are organized by private institutions and they are charging high if not ridiculous amounts, mind you this policy was implemented on the excuse that most parents couldn’t afford secondary schools, so if this is true then they (those who couldn’t afford) will still suffer because they won’t be able to pay for extra tuition for their children.

Reasons why Ghana is not ready for Double Track System

The double track is a bad initiative and must be shut down immediately, but on the other hand, free secondary education is very good but the question is, ARE WE READY? NO, and this is why;

Unavailability of amenities

In Ghana, we do not have enough public secondary schools to hold the number of junior high graduates every year. I would like to commend Mr. John Dramani Mahama on his community high school initiative, if consequent governments will actually focus on this project for a stipulated tie span I believe within the next ten years we would not have problems with free secondary education.

Lack of funds to finance education

Every project no matter how small needs funds to get it moving and also to sustain it. There is insufficient funds for this project and we know this because the incumbent has made us aware that they will use our tax to fund it, today, proceeds from Ghana’s oil is funding the Free SHS but students are trending on social media for the wrong reasons  It’s a good thing but this has caused an increase in taxes leading to the increase of goods and services, putting the same financial pressure on the same people they claim they were taking it from.

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Education and Politics

In 2015, one of the major campaign promises of the incumbent was to make secondary education free. Most Ghanaians were optimistic about the policy because to them it was not impossible, but the country’s education system was just not ready for that. As the people would want it the incumbent was elected and I can say it was based majorly on that promise. True to their word within a year in office they put things in place and implemented the policy of free secondary education. After the implementation, there was a repeat of what happened in the past, overpopulation, so to bring a solution to that problem they introduced a new system called the double track system, as the name implies it was divided into two, the two were named, green batch and gold batch. Each batch has to be in class for forty days, these forty days is here to substitute the already existent ninety days spent in school.

Just like the first shift system, this one equally has several loopholes, which will have a dire effect on our future as a nation. After careful consideration I realized that the negative sides of this system outweigh the positive sides, I could only think of a few positive effects of this system and any system that has more negative effects than positive that system is nothing but a failure.

Double Track System disadvantages need to be tackled by all because it has the ability to transform the level of literacy for the better in Ghana if the bottle necks can be taken care of.

The president deserves to be commended for this initiative but he should be advised to shut it down. He should gather his team around the drawing board and plan a better way of implementing and sustaining the policy without damaging Ghana. FREE EDUCATION WITHIN THE SHORTEST POSSIBLE TIME BUT NOT NOW!!!

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