Understanding the Social and Economic Lives of Never-enrolled Children: A Case Study of Communities in Northern and Southern Ghana

Abstract

Evidence suggests that human skills and abilities, developed through education, translate into individual social and economic benefits that increase employment opportunities and incomes, national economic growth and poverty reduction. For this reason, through a number of interventions, the Government of Ghana has demonstrated its commitment to ensuring that all children of school-going age are in school. However, many Ghanaian children of school-going age are still not enrolled in school. This study therefore sought to understand the household and community conditions that might be accountable for children’s non-school attendance in selected communities in the northern and southern parts of the country. It used an interpretive research approach to elicit the stories of children who have never enrolled in school. Among others, it found that household factors such as fosterage, parents or guardians’ inability to meet the direct and indirect costs of schooling, certain socio-economic activities peculiar to the communities and the need for child labour are accountable for children’s non-school enrolment. To get some of the never-enrolled children back to school, the study suggests that (a) parents/guardians and communities be sensitised about the benefits of education, (b) the academic calendar in some communities be changed to suit the economic/farming/fishing activities of communities where children’s involvement in economic activities is paramount to the survival strategy of their families and they therefore find it very difficult to enrol in school.

Citation

Ghartey Ampiah, J.; Adu-Yeboah, C. Understanding the Social and Economic Lives of Never-enrolled Children: A Case Study of Communitiesin Northern and Southern Ghana. In: CREATE Pathways to Access Series, Research Monograph Number 66. (2011) 1-35. ISBN 0-901881-78-3

Understanding the Social and Economic Lives of Never-enrolled Children: A Case Study of Communities in Northern and Southern Ghana

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