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Ghana’s high school students struggle without internet

Christine Marinho/YJI

Aburi, GHANA – Looking at the improvements and efficiency of the internet in the educational sector, it’s ridiculous to think that education can be promoted and improved without technology.

But the Ghana Education Service has rules and regulations that cut across all senior high school government institutions, and one of them severely limits internet access for students. 

Unlike advanced countries where people at all stages of life use the internet, Ghana enforces a limit on high school students, and there is a penalty for breaking the rule.

In my school, the only access to the internet is the Information, Communication and Technology laboratory which is used once a week. Even then, the connection is not stable.

This makes life very hectic for students, especially when one has a project or research work to do. If the lab was effective and accessible, we the student body would have been okay with that.

Apart from the lab lessons, getting access to the computers in the laboratory is very difficult due to the fact that students will destroy the devices and misuse the internet, causing damage and expensive repairs.

We sometimes feel these rules about internet use are barbaric and there is a need to change them. Teaching and learning becomes more interesting when the internet is available.

There are some topics which are best understood when students can see pictures rather than just reading about it or listening to a teacher.

Without the internet, students are also cut off from news about our country and the world.

Once we get to school, we do not get to know what is actually happening in the country, which is very bad. Our source of information is to inquire from our teachers and house mistresses.

There is no difference when comparing the life of a prisoner to that of a student in a boarding school. They all have restricted lives.

As a resolution, students should be allowed access to the internet in school in order to improve the learning process.

Restrictions can be put on the duration and occasion of the usage, but preventing students from having access to the internet in school is detrimental to the country’s educational system and therefore, its future.  

Mayama Opare is a Junior Reporter with Youth Journalism International from Accra, Ghana. She wrote this commentary.

Christine Marinho is a Junior Reporter and Senior Illustrator with Youth Journalism International from Texas, USA. She made the illustration.

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