Speaking English, a worrying trend in most schools in the rural communities in Ghana.

By | January 1, 2021

There are some issues in most rural communities’ schools in Ghana that militate against the performance of children in this schools.

This article has look into detail some of the reasons why children in the rural communities speaks in the local language more often than in the English language, it’s consequences and the way forward.

Most Ghanaian rural communities are located far away from towns and with limited accommodation making it difficult for teachers teaching in those communities to stay and teach after normal classes hours as compared to their counterparts in the towns and cities, some teachers don’t even attend school regularly due to long distances between where the stay and the place the teaches. Theses create a communication gaps between the teachers and their pupils in those areas, these teachers find it difficult to complete their course in the academic calendar. These inconsistency between these teachers and their pupils to communicate regularly in the English language make these children find it troubling to communicate in the English language. The effects of this is that children in this rural communities can’t speak fluently in the English language as compared to their colleagues in the cities and towns.

Children in these communities express in the local language more often than in the English language , due to the frequent use of the language both in the house and in the school these children at times will come to school for a whole week but will not talk in the English language with either their friends nor their teachers which to me is a serious puzzle that need to be address fast . These attitudes put up by these pupils make it difficult for some of them to express themselves in terms of writing. Even some times to read and understand a simple question that is put before them it is always a challenge to them. And if you can’t read and write your performance definitely will be poor.

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Our checks have also revealed just a Chuck of the population of teachers in the rural communities in Ghana from kindergarten to primary six (6) speaks English during teaching. Some of these teachers in the rural communities use their various Ghanaian languages to communicate with these young one during normal classes hours rather than the official medium of communication which is the English language. Mostly children learn by imitation and because these teachers use only local languages to teach in these rural communities’ schools children end up finding it difficult to express themselves profusely in the English language in these areas the find themselves. Which also translate into their academic performance when ever they are given task to perform.

We have also realized that some of these children in these communities do not use the official medium of communication either in class room or out side the classroom because of inferiority complex. We notice that children in these communities find it comfortable using their various languages than the recommended medium of communication which is the English language, this is because these children has this feeling that when the use the English language and makes a mistake their friends will be using it to make fund of them and for that matter it is better for them to either keep mute or use their local Ghanaian language and be free. This also contribute to the inability of children in our rural areas to communicate frequently in the English language.

It is my wish that the above mention points should be looked at critical by all who are concern in the total up bring of these children in our rural communities school to ensure strict measures are put in place so that each child either whether he or she reside in towns or rural area the standard that apply to those who live in town should be the same across board. Government should also make sure that there is accommodation for teachers who teaches in this rural communities so that teachers can stay after school or organized remedial class for these rural communities pupils so that the can be as equal as their colleagues in the our towns and cities.

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