Angel Carbonu, the President of the National Graduate Association of Teachers is unhappy with the verdict passed by the Accra High Court in the case involving Achimota School and two students over their dreadlock hairstyle.
According to Angel Carbonu, the ruling by Justice Gifty Addo will open the door for students to wear all kinds of hairstyles in the name of religion or belief.
In an interview with Okay FM, an angry Carbonu asked Ghanaians not to hold teachers responsible for the breakdown in societal values.
He stated that the ruling by the court has redefined the role of teachers as just people who impact knowledge but has no say in students’ appearance.
“We teachers don’t care about these rulings. We will develop a nonchalant attitude towards these issues. In the past when students misbehaved, we blamed teachers but now you can’t blame us. We don’t give a damn about this ruling. We have not lost anything. It’s a problem for the society,” he stressed.
Angel Carbonu was of the view that a bad precedent has been set and Ghanaians will regret the impact it will have on schools.
“What the judgement means is that the Rasta students and all other students can dress anyway and go to school, and we teachers do not have to waste our time and energy talking about character formation. We thank the court for making our work easy.
“Someone wears rasta, you should also be able to wear your cap or hat. We really do not care about that in any way. We do not care about character formation because our professional understanding of character formation has been truncated by a court ruling and you want us to care. We are going to obey the court ruling” he said.
He also lambasted the lawyer for the Rastafarian students, Ras Wayo Tetteh over some claims he made.
“Tell him that he is a lawyer, not an educationist. Everybody can be a lawyer but not an educationist so he’s not on my level. He is just a mere lawyer and I’m an educationist. He shouldn’t bring himself, it won’t help him,” Carbonu fumed.
Meanwhile, Achimota School has chosen to appeal the ruling by the High Court.
The board of the school in a statement said that “the governing Board of Achimota School was represented in court yesterday, 31 May 2021, and has learned of the outcome of the case brought against it by two persons who had earlier applied to be admitted to the School. The court ruled that the religious rights of the applicants had been violated by the School Management as they sought to enforce time-tested and well-known rules of the School. The court further directed the School to admit the two applicants.”
“The School Board disagrees with the ruling of the court. The School Board has therefore directed its Lawyers to appeal against the ruling,” the statement emphasised.
Education Minister Dr. Yaw Osei Adutwum has however said the board cannot take a unilateral decision to appeal the ruling. According to him, a decision will be taken based o the advice of the Attorney General.