Achimota School has turned down a Ghana Education Service order to accept two Rastafarian students.
After a tense meeting on Monday with the regional director of education and the GES, the school’s headmistress announced that the school would not negotiate on its school rules and that students will only be admitted if they remove their dreadlocks.
Over the weekend, the Ghana Education Service (GES) ordered the headmistress of Achimota School to accept two teenage students whose admissions had been revoked due to their dreadlocks.
The order came after a long and arduous online campaign against the Achimota school board’s decision.
However, according to EIB’s Fritz Ameghashie, the Headmistress of Achimota School confirmed after the meeting on Monday that either the parents negotiate on their religious values and encourage their children to break the deadlocks, or students would be denied entry to the school.
The school’s decision came after the National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT) strongly opposed a directive from the Ghana Education Service requiring Achimota School’s management to accept two students with dreadlocks on Monday.
The exemptions, according to NAGRAT President Eric Angel Carbonu, would result in a disorderly school atmosphere in the region, and he has asked the GES to reroute the management of Achimota School to ensure students follow the laws.
“the population of students in Achimota Senior High School is about 4,000 students with about 130 teachers. To be able to manage 4,000 students coming from different homes with different upbringing, different training and different behaviour need to have universal rules and regulation that ought to be followed by all students in school, We cannot begin, this day, to start making exemptions for individual students based on their belief, based on their culture, based on their tradition, and based on many other issues.”
“That will lead to a chaotic school environment. And a chaotic school environment becomes an indisciplined school environment that cannot produce the result that we expect. NAGRAT totally disagrees with the position of the management of the GES and we are calling on the GES to redirect the headmistress and the staff of the Achimota Senior High School to ensure that the rules and regulations of Achimota School and indeed any other senior high school is abided by every student.”
Mr Carbonu added “one does not understand why people want to turn our schools into deregulated institutions where people’s whims and caprices hold way. The school is not a fashion environment, the school is not an environment to exhibit one’s religious beliefs. The school is an environment for training and conformity is part of the training.”