Reverend Professor Seth Asare-Danso, a Professor of Religious and Moral Education (RME) at the University of Cape Coast (UCC), has called on government to make RME part of the core subjects at all levels of education.
He said the principles of religious and moral education gave students an important framework for understanding the past and present events, beliefs and their impact on people’s lives.
It also promoted an understanding of religion as dynamic, internally diverse, and evolving, thereby enabling learners to appreciate their religious beliefs and practices to accept other groups whose values and traditions were different from theirs.
That, he indicated, would instil in Ghanaians a heightened sense of socio-cultural and religious identity that nurtured a strong understanding of nationalism for accelerated development.
Prof Asare-Danso said these at his inaugural lecture on the topic: “Fulfilling the mission of the Basel Mission for Sustainable Development: The Presbyterian Praxis”.
With over 30 years’ experience in teaching courses in religious and moral education, he had researched widely into those courses as well as curriculum and instructional issues in education, history, social anthropology and theological education.
He indicated that teaching of morality should not be based on religion, considering the pluralistic nature of society.
Moreso, efforts being made by the institution to implement moral education curriculum should be complemented by the collective inputs of all social institutions like the home, the mass media and religious bodies.
In that regard, Prof. Asare-Danso challenged the University of Ghana, University of Education, Winneba, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, and the University for Development Studies, which are mentoring Colleges of Education with few contents on RME, to review their curriculum.
They must endeavour to train and fully equip teacher trainees with a comprehensive pedagogical knowledge and skills required for effective delivery in Ghanaian basic schools.
Similarly, he also advised theological institutions to make the study of Ethics a core curriculum to fully imbibe in trainees the philosophical traits of ethical behaviour to impact positively on society.
Faith-based organisations must also redefine their theology mission to respond effectively to the needs of the contemporary society, he said.
Prof Asare-Danso cited the views of the Pentecostals that: “Mission is about the total development of the individual and not spiritual growth alone. One cannot just be praying for the people and end there.”
“The church must provide for all their needs holistically as exhibited by the Presbyterian Church of Ghana in education, health, environment, gender, job creation and spiritual growth.”
Professor Johnson Nyarko Boampong, the Vice-Chancellor of the UCC, expressed the University’s commitment to quality education and expanding its frontiers to produce entrepreneurial-oriented graduates to promptly respond to the global dynamics of trade and commerce.