Psychologist, Dr. Charles Wiafe-Akenten has agreed to the claims of heightened stress and fear as students prepare for their final exams, especially with the recent increase in COVID-19 cases recorded in schools.
This follows growing concerns by the National Council for Parent Teachers Associations (NCPTAs), Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT), and other stakeholders on the psychological capacity of final year students to successfully write their final year exams.
Speaking exclusively to Universnews, Dr. Charles Wiafe-Akenten advised school counsellors to engage students through counselling sessions to mentally prepare them for their final exam.
He entreated teachers in basic schools who do not have access to professional psychologists to incorporate group counselling sessions into teaching schedules.
“I am not sure whether every basic school in this context JHS have counsellors, even if they don’t have professional counsellors the teachers can also support, so this is the time as they teach they can also bring in some counselling sessions 5 minutes or something.” He said.
According to Dr. Wiafe, students can further reinforce the efforts of teachers by adhering to the safety protocols in order to combat the disease and making sure that it does not affect their intellectual capabilities.
He then encouraged students to draw their personal timetables to help buffer the stress and anxiety that comes with writing exams.
“the students themselves are also to be extra careful, go straight to school and observe all the protocol that we have been told. What they can do include one, assuring themselves that their intellectual capability has not been taken away by Covid-19.”
Further speaking, Dr. Wiafe-Akenten urged parents to assuage fears of their wards, ensure that they have their Personal Protective Equipments (PPEs) and also provide them with extra if they can.
He then called on the media to execute their roles in sensitizing and educating the entire public.
There has been over 60 recorded cases of COVID-19 in Senior High Schools with only a case recorded in Junior High Schools
This comes after Accra Girls Senior High School recorded its first 8 cases among 34 other schools.
The various Teacher Unions, in succession, have called for the closure of schools and the postponement of the exam stating that the students are psychologically unstable and therefore would not be of sound mind to write the WASSCE and BECE examinations and come out successfully.
They also asserted that, not enough health personnel are either stationed in or attached to many of the schools for routine surveillance due to the pandemic.
Meanwhile, the Ghana Education Service has said that it has developed a plan that will ensure that students fully participate in the final examination.
Story by: Jessica N. Borteley | universnewsroom.com