The Impact of Ghana’s School Feeding Programme on Enrollment and Retention of Pupils in Talensi District in Upper East Region (Published)
This research work examined the impact of the Ghana School Feeding Programme (GSFP) on enrolment and retention in basic schools in Talensi District of the Upper East Region of Ghana. The study examined the extent to which enrolment and retention can be influenced by the presence of School Feeding Programmes (SFPs). It focused on finding out what motivates pupils to enroll in certain basic schools and the influence of GSFP on pupils learning. The work was a survey of selected basic schools in the Talensi District which are enjoying the GSFP. Two groups of population were used for this study; pupils and teachers. The population for pupils was 2,028 out of which forty (40) pupils were randomly selected as the sample size. On the other side, eight (8) teachers were purposively selected to form part of the sample size. Questionnaire was the main research tool used whilst interview was used to back up the main research instrument. The research found out that although basic school enrolment and retention were influenced by the presence of GSFP, the quality of teachers and good academic performance of schools were other factors influencing enrolment and retention in the schools under review. The study further found out that the presence of GSFP in basic schools had a positive effect on pupils’ academic performance. On the impact of the programme on basic school enrolment and retention, the conclusion drawn is that there is a direct and positive relationship between the presence of the GSFP in a school and the enrolment and retention of pupils in that school. Since the presence of the GSFP leads to increment in enrolment and retention, it will be prudent to replicate the programme in all public basic schools. This is particularly very important owing to the fact that this research has proven that the food pupils eat in schools contribute significantly to improvements in their learning. According to Del Rosso (1999) when children are fed in school, it is most likely to increase their attention, cognitive function and learning. Also, Lambers (2009) credited increased enrolment and retention of pupils to SFPs. The study concludes that the GSFP remains critical to the success of basic education and all efforts should be made to expand its structures and scope.