Even the hardy mouth of irony twists itself in a half-amused, half-sad smile at the sight of over a hundred children taking lessons under the open sky near the house of Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) Education Minister Matloob Inqalabi in Kotli’s Battal village, some 180 kilometres from the capital city.Established in 1986, the Government Primary School is not just without a building, but also lacks desks and benches for the students. Both boys and girls take their classes patiently seated on red rugs spread over stones. Even after 28 years of its inception, the education department has not yet approved the construction of a much-needed building for the school. “In the rain, we cannot study while in the scorching heat, we have no shelter to protect ourselves from the sun which beats down directly upon us,” said Mahrukh Anwar, a fourth grader.
School registration cancelled
The district administration has cancelled the registration of a private school operating illegally inside a building that was built with the assistance of Punjab Education Foundation for another school. The DCO had formed a committee comprising acting EDO education Ramzan Anjum and assistant commissioner Abid Hussain Bhatti for inquiry after a fifth class student Muhammad Talha (11) was killed allegedly by Muhammad Ishaq, a teacher of Misali Zakariya Science School. The committee visited the school and found that it was illegally operating inside a building that was built with funding from the Punjab Education Foundation (PEF) for Jamia Khursheedia Public School at Tariqabad which was later occupied by administration of Misali Zakariya School.
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80pc fifth grade students fail English exam
Due to an alleged computer mistake, over 80 per cent students of the fifth grade have been declared unsuccessful in the English language examination, conducted by the Punjab Examination Commission (PEC). Around 150 students are still waiting for their ‘missing’ results, which were official declared on March 31, depriving them of admission in sixth grade. The teachers of Rawalpindi district have termed this as a ‘mistake’ of PEC. They claimed that the English paper was held on February 10 in Rawalpindi district. The answers of the exam could not be inserted in the computer for marking; as a result, more than 80 per cent students were declared fail. According the teachers, on February 9, the original question paper was leaked. In response, PEC had to replace it with a new one, but the answers of the new paper could not be inserted in the system for marking.
National Vocational and Technical Training Commission (NAVTTC) has finalised a programme under which as many as 25,000 lesser educated and unemployed youth will receive free technical education. NAVTTC has been mandated to complete this task through the prime minister’s youth skills development programme. The media coordinator of NAVTTC, Mohammad Akram Burq, said priority would be given to the applicants from rural areas, as they have fewer job opportunities and resources “The total cost of the project is Rs800 million, and as per the plan, 200 jobless youth from Islamabad will be trained, 500 from Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK), 300 from Gilgit-Baltistan, 400 from Fata, 3,000 from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), 2,000 from Balochistan, 5,850 from Sindh and 12,750 from Punjab,” he said.
Teachers, students walk for enrollment
Teachers and students of Serai Gambila town on Wednesday held a enrollment awareness walks. Assistant District Officer Qadeer Shah led the walk, which started from circle school and culminated near police post after passing through the main bazaar. Political and social activists and residents of the locality also participated in the walk. They carried banners inscribed with messages highlighting the importance of education and enrollment of children in schools. On the occasion, Qadeer Shah said that all-out efforts would be made to make the enrollment drive a success.
Lawmakers suggest keeping HEC intact
The convener of the National Assembly Sub-Committee on Education, Trainings and Standards in Higher Education has asked of the top education regulatory body to go beyond its mandated role and help find solutions to issues facing Pakistan.Taking note of this, while seemingly forgetting the quagmire that the commission is already in, the Higher Education Commission (HEC) chief promised to “soon” share a proposal on the formation of think tanks regarding water, energy, agriculture and other issues in the next meeting and how universities could help in this regard.