Minister of Education, Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh has instructed heads of second cycle institutions not to prevent final year students from writing the West African Senior Secondary Certificate Examinations (WASSCE) due to unpaid school fees.

He noted that such actions contravened directives from the Ministry directing heads of second cycle institutions not to prevent students from writing the examinations.

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Opoku Prempeh ordered that no Headmaster/Headmistress is mandated to prevent the students from taking part in the examinations.

The practice of some heads of senior high schools (SHSs) collecting school fees for the second and the third terms from students preparing for the West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) still persists, contrary to the law.

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The Minister gave the warning in Accra when he visited selected SHSs including Legon Presbyterian SHS, Achimota SHS and Accra Girls SHS at the start of this year’s WASSCE to monitor the situation on the ground.

Addressing the media, Opoku Prempeh expressed satisfaction about the serene environment, the security and safety at the schools, and the peaceful manner in which the exams were being conducted.

Oftentimes a usual occurrence prior to and during the WASSCE, candidates are even sacked from the examination halls over unpaid school fees.

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It is perhaps in this vein that the minister asked school authorities to refrain from unauthorized means to collect fees from final year students.

However, a statement signed by the Chief Director at the Ministry of Education, Enoch Cobbinah also directed these Heads to "desist from collecting unapproved fees, particularly from Form Three students of the 2016/17 academic year".

The statement said "Following a dialogue between the Ghana Education Service and the National Executives of the Conference of Heads of Assisted Secondary Schools (CHASS), the Minister for Education has instructed all heads of schools NOT to prevent any student from writing the ongoing West African Senior School Certificate Examinations (WASSCE) for non-payment of school fees."