The emergence of Student Pidgin in Ghana is estimated to have started fairly recently: between 1965 and the early 1970s (Huber, 1999; Dako, 2002). Male students in high prestige senior secondary schools and universities have been credited with leading in the development of Student Pidgin. The use of Student Pidgin has since been spreading among some girls and is currently found in an increasing number of contexts, including the home. The fact that students use Student Pidgin seems unexpected, considering the fact that they are competent speakers of Standard English.2 In this context, the question to consider is what underlies this behavior? This has been the subject of recurrent debate. Educational authorities typically feel that Student Pidgin reflects the fact that the standard of English in Ghanaian senior secondary schools and universities has fallen. An example of this comes from a speech given by the Vice Chancellor of the University of Ghana, Professor Kwadwo Asenso-Okyere, on 28 October 2002:
[He] expressed concern about the standard of English among university students and advised them to desist from speaking Pidgin English, which he said would not help them. Speaking at this year's matriculation of 7,959 freshmen out of the 10,301 admitted into the University, Prof Asenso-Okyere said there was evidence of deterioration in English Language among students in their examinations and theses, which some employers had also complained about.