Mrs. Amissah-Arthur argued that because government has taken it upon itself to provide items such as school uniforms, free lunch for pupils and free sandals, parents and teachers are shirking their responsibilities.
The Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT) has described as unfortunate the Second Lady's comments that schools should find ways of buying their own chalk, log books and other teaching and learning materials.
Ghana’s Second Lady, Mrs Matilda Amissah-Arthur’s outburst followed a request made by the headmistress of Kukurantumi Presby Primary School, Juliet Oppong that the government should among other things, provide her school with chalks after the second lady presented five sets of computers to the school.
“I think we have over pampered you people. Because we have provided free school uniforms so parents don’t even want to buy basic things for their children.
“I will not give you chalk today, neither will I give it to you tomorrow. You have teachers; you have the PTA, go and buy chalk for the school.
“The head teacher has shocked me. So if the government has provided free school uniforms and it is not up to the number your school needs, can’t you look for other alternatives to provide these items?
“You also mentioned that your school does not have chalk, log books; all these are not expensive. The government provides all these teaching and learning materials but sometimes, it is not enough for all the schools across the country,” the second lady said.
Reacting to the remarks on Okay FM, the Public Relations Officer of GNAT, Peter Tetteh Korda said it was unfortunate for the second lady to have made such comments
“It is very unfortunate because it is the responsibility of government to provide for the essentials needed in teaching; it is a fact. It is government’s duty to provide chalks and so it is sad she made that comment. If she says chalk is not so expensive and so we can buy then we will also ask how much is chalk that government cannot provide? We can take what she said as the position of government because she is no ordinary person. What she said is not right with all respect to her,” he said.