Ghana is a country that has free public education, but with a slight catch. In order
to attend, one must pay for their own school uniforms, textbooks, school supplies
and food. Often times, these costs are too high for the average Ghanaian family
to afford and children either do not attend school at all or drop out at an early
age. We spoke to the women of a rural Ghanaian village about the importance of sending
your children to school and the importance of dental hygiene. The children were
all so sweet and wanted to hold our hands and play.
All the children in primary school in Ghana wear uniforms. I was amazed and delighted
by the colorful dresses, shorts and collared shirts that I saw. Most were some sort
of brown or tan color, but others were quite colorful, withal different colors pinks
and magentas and teals. For the most part, then school houses were small and appeared
no different from the average Ghanaian building. They were, however, usually located
on some small patch of land so the children could play soccer or other games. The
children seemed motivated and genuinely interested in learning. Most schools are
parochial until they children begin attending University.
Recently, the system of schooling in Ghana changed the number of years that children
attend school. By the time they were finished with primary schooling, students were
already in the early to mid twenties. Now, the age that students begin university
usually corresponds with the Western schooling program.