Schoolchildren suffer for want of top education officer
Some 180,000 schoolchildren of the city find themselves caught in dilemma regarding free textbooks that government distributes every new academic year because the authority to decide the matter is not there. Dawn has learnt that the authority lies with the Director General of the Federal Directorate of Education (FDE) but the government has not appointed one since it removed Dr Shahnaz A. Riaz on February 13. Director Colleges Mehmood Akhtar Malik, who was given charge of the office, retired on April 9. Hafiz Sher Ali, Joint Secretary Capital Administration and Development Division (CADD) went on leave just a week after taking over the temporary post from him. Currently Joint Secretary CADD Rafique Tahir holds the charge but a permanent DG FDE is still to be appointed.
New academic session starts without textbooks
The new academic session has started two weeks ago in the educational institutions under Federal Directorate of Education (FDE) but still the students are still without textbooks. The classes for the new session started on April 14 but the required books could not be published in time by the authorities concerned due to which students are facing difficulties towards their studies. Afzal Ahmad, father of three said, “My children are studying in FDE-run institutions and they have received only one or two textbooks so far.” “I tried to buy the relevant books from the market but these were not available,” the parent said. Hina Inam, a teacher at a model college, said, “The college administration managed availability of old textbooks for the students to avoid wastage of their precious time.” “However students are not much enthusiastic for studying through the old books at the onset of new academic session”, she observed.
Lakki schools long for science teachers
The local chapter of all cadre teachers association has demanded of the government to appoint additional science teachers in the state-run high schools and award one-step promotion to the headmasters. The demand was made at a meeting held in the District Headquarters Complex Tajazai on Tuesday. The association's patron in chief Pir Ghulam chaired the meeting while Fareedullah Shah, Hidayatullah, Gul Malook Khan Wazir, Jamil Ahmad Khan, Azeem Khan and other office-bearers were in the attendance. The teachers' leaders said that high schools were faced with the shortage of teaching staff, calling upon the government to accelerate the recruitment process so as to overcome the deficiency of teachers in public sector schools. They said that posts of additional science teachers in high schools had been sanctioned since July 2012 but those posts could not be filled so far. "The new academic session has begun and the government should provide additional science teachers to all high schools without any further delay," they maintained.
Scorching heat, outages and exams
Ongoing Higher Secondary Certificate (HSC) Part-I & II Annual Examinations have become a nightmare for students who are forced to appear in the papers during scorching heat while 70 to 80 per cent examination centres face loadshedding. As mercury levels of Karachi hits 42 degree centigrade students are students facing intense problems in attempting their exams. On the other hand K-Electricity is also showing no mercy for students, teachers and other staff managing papers as loadshedding continues at exam centres. BIEK Controller Examination Imran Khan Chishti told The Nation that almost 70 to 80 per cent of 108 examination centres, formed are in the grip of power failure. More than 200,000 candidates are enrolled in the intermediate examinations.
Complete Story: http://www.nation.com.pk/karachi/30-Apr-2014/scorching-heat-outages-and-exams?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed:%20pakistan-news-newspaper-daily-english-online/24hours-news%20(The%20Nation%20:%20Latest%20News)
Class 5th exams under provincial boards
Adviser to Chief Minister Khyber Pakhtunkhaw Yasin Khalil Tuesday said the PTI led provincial government is utilizing all available resources to overcome the problem of teachers’ deficiency in government schools. He said in order to check the performance of headmasters of the schools; the government has made it mandatory that class 5th examination would be held under the board. He said the headmasters of the schools with poor performance would be required to retreat the charge as head of the institute, adding that government would not allow anyone to play with the future of coming generation.
Complete Story: http://epaper.pakobserver.net/201404/30/national2.php
Intel Organises education transformation workshop
Intel Pakistan recently organised the education transformation policy advocacy workshop to share and discuss their plans for education transformation in the country. An effective education transformation can help countries increase student competitiveness, build job skills and competencies, support economic development and provide social cohesion. Through research and work with the local governments, vendors, and communities, Intel supports countries to drive a systemic education transformation. Intel has invested over $1 billion and three million employees to improve teaching and learning environments in 70+ countries over the last decade. Sharing his thoughts, Intel Pakistan Country Manager Naveed Siraj said: "We cannot stress enough on the importance of ICT in education. It is one of the key skills needed to access and enrich learning of all kinds in the modern world. It's all about communication, and in the world in which our children are growing up, it is vital: whatever they do, they should to be ICT-literate.
Children’s Literature Festival
The 14th Children’s Literature Festival (CLF) along with the Teachers’ Literature Festival (TLF) would take place at Federal College of Education from May 1-3. According to the organizers of the festivals, the Teachers’ Literature Festival would be held on May 1 and Children Literature Festival would be held from May 2-3. The festivals would be organized by Idara-e-Taleem-O-Aagahi (ITA), Oxford University Press (OUP) in collaboration with Open Society Foundations (OSF) and Federal College of Education (FCE). Teachers’ Literature Festival (TLF) would engage 2000 teachers on core concepts and practices of CLFs. On each of the three days, this is a free public event for all school systems of Islamabad and Punjab from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm of 14 learning multisensory programmes to promote the culture of reading for creativity, imagination and stimulation beyond textbooks and tests.
Complete Story: http://pakobserver.net/detailnews.asp?id=240742
On hegemony of language and linguistic diversity by Zubair Torwali
The Eighteenth Amendment to the Constitution is a right step towards achieving this goal. In the wake of the devolution of education to the provinces, the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa government adopted Pashto as medium of instruction for primary level education. Moreover, the provincial authorities resolved to incorporate four other languages (Hindko, Khowar, Seriaki and Indus Kohistani) to be gradually incorporated in the primary school syllabus. Hopefully, remaining languages in the province will also be made a part of the school curriculum. In addition to these policies, extensive research is needed for the standardisation of the orthographies of these languages. Many of the hindrances in the way of reading and writing a language are due to the fact that there are no widely-recognised rules for writing or spelling.
Book, not Facebook by Zubeida Mustafa
The country has been ruled by leaders who were not interested in books. If they were, it was very selective reading they did which did not help them draw sensible conclusions. If one’s choice of books is not well-rounded, he will be denied the benefits that books have to offer. This could be one of the basic underlying factors that have reduced our politics and governance — and so, logically, the country — to its present state. We may have produced leaders who outstripped Machiavelli and Chanakya in political expediency and ruthlessness but never actually read The Prince and Arthashastra. That is why we have produced no statesman in our corridors of power. I wonder how many have read Nelson Mandela’s Long Walk to Freedom.
Complete Story: http://www.dawn.com/news/1103137/book-not-facebook
Education is the secret of progress byJaved Younus
Pakistan has never seen a democratic stability in its history just because of lack of education in the country. If you want to have democratic stability, economic, cultural and social development in a given country then you must work on improvement of education system in that country. What we are facing today is the outcome of not paying heed to education in Pakistan since its independence.