The Aesthetic Connotation of Modes of Dressing by Teachers and their Impact on Quality Education in the Junior High School

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JULY, 2007
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Ghana has seen persistent agitations for educational reforms due to unsatisfactory outcome of educational objectives since independence. The major reasons were no different from the latest reform that was introduced as the Senior High School (SHS) and Junior High School (JHS) system. That was so because it was yet another review of the entire educational system of the country with the view to making it responsive to current global and social challenges (Anamoah-Mensah report, 2002). The background to the research among others is based on the complaints by the general public as to the justifications of these reforms and the spending of huge sums of money on education. The public is not also satisfied with the products of the educational system that cannot fit into the job market properly. Neither are they accepted in the indigenous societies in terms of behaviour, job ethics as well as the mode of dressing. This research is initiated from an entirely new perspective and it is about the dress styles of teachers and the impact on the Junior High School students and for that matter quality education. One of the concerns has been whether the influx of numerous foreign dress styles in the Ghanaian society has effect on students, teachers and quality education? Besides, whether there are other factors that are likely to contribute to the impact on students’ learning and quality education? The focus of the research is on students, teachers, parents, education officers and fashion designers. The data gathering methods are mainly Quantitative and Qualitative. Data gathering was by means of primary data through questionnaire, interviews, discussions, observations and taking of pictures and the secondary data was gathered through library activities to review relevant related materials from books, magazines, newspapers, theses, educational reports, generalised and specialised Encyclopaedia, bibliography, CD ROM and internet. The main findings are that the teachers in the classroom are influenced by the influx of the foreign dress styles in the present Ghanaian society. The teachers also influence both positively and negatively on students by way of their styles of dressing. The researcher throughout the investigation observed that all complaints made by the respondents were based on the Ghanaian cultural values, the belief system and the concept of art in the society. To be able to convert such vital information into the realm of effective educational resources, teachers need some enlightenment in distinct dressing. It is therefore recommended that the teaching of Art Education be given much more prominence in the educational curriculum and then train more Art Education teachers with study leave. The government should revisit the re-introduction of cultural programmes into the basic educational system. Research materials such as this should be made available to teachers through the Ministry of Education. ‘Data Art Education’ should be made prominent feature in the teaching of Art Education especially concerning indigenous cultural values and the meanings of types of dressing. It is hoped that if these recommendations are carried out, the Ghanaian teacher would be better dressed and become more acceptable in the indigenous Ghanaian society. This would make the students learn better and acquire the needed skills in order to fit into the job market. The students would be less burdensome to their parents and government and fit well in the job market. This would place Ghana into a middle income nation of the world.
A Thesis submitted to the School of Graduate Studies, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the award of the degree of MASTER OF ARTS IN ART EDUCATION,