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Free SHS Bill heads to Parliament for debate

Written by on June 11, 2024

The government is preparing to present the Free Senior High School (SHS) Bill to Parliament in the coming days. This legislation aims to regulate the policy and ensure its sustainability.

This initiative arises amidst concerns about potential cancellation by future administrations and the challenges currently facing the program.

Educational stakeholders, including EduWatch, have proposed that parents choosing boarding facilities should bear the associated costs.

Additionally, EduWatch has recommended focusing the policy on children from impoverished households, utilizing data from the Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty (LEAP) program as a reference.

At a Leaders’ Media Briefing on Tuesday, June 11, Majority Leader Alexander Afenyo-Markin announced that the government will present the Free SHS Bill to Parliament. He emphasized that the bill aims to enhance the policy’s effectiveness and sustainability, in line with the aspirations outlined in Chapter 5 of the Constitution.

He explained that while these constitutional provisions are not currently enforceable by law, the government intends to make them justiciable through legislation.

“I can also report that the Education Minister will present the Free SHS Bill to Parliament. Chapter 5 of the Constitution provides aspirational guidelines. These are not justiciable, but when the government adopts such aspirations as policy and puts them into action, they become justiciable through legislation,” he stated.

“In other words, there are provisions in the Constitution that are not enforceable; you cannot claim a legal right to them. Their existence does not mean you can go to court to enforce those rights—they are aspirational.”


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