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Cheating galore at schools turned into exam centres

Cheating galore at schools turned into exam centres for their own students
Karachi, April 01: Students of class 10 at several schools have cashed in on the Board of Secondary Education Karachi's (BSEK) ill-planned examination policies as well as the vested interests of some officials during the first three papers of the currently-under way Matric examinations. Going against all proper norms and practices, hundreds of students, if not thousands, have been sitting for their exams in their own schools and are being invigilated by teachers that had taught them throughout the year. The BSEK is unable to explain why this relaxation was allowed to particular schools.

According to the Town-Wise Allotment Chart for Fixation of Centres 2009 for Bin Qasim issued by BSEK, Pakistan Steel Shah Latif Boys Secondary School, Steel Town, was declared the official examination centre for students with roll numbers in the range of 429080-429182. Similarly, Pakistan Steel Cadet College, Steel Town, was declared the official examination centre for students with roll numbers in the range of 428939-429079, 429589-429604 and 429631-429667.

However, upon investigation, it turned out that the students with roll numbers in the range of 429080-429182 are students of Shah Latif School itself. Similarly, the students, excluding those of Galant Foundation School, with roll numbers in the range of 428939-429079, 429589-429604 and 429631-429667 are registered with the BSEK from Pakistan Steel Cadet College itself.

While there is no justifiable reason for making these two institutes the examination centres for their own students, which clearly creates a huge conflict of interest, what makes the matter more controversial is that even the Centre Superintendents were internal.

After off-the-record interviews of invigilators-cum-teachers of the schools, it was reliably learnt that the students have been allowed to use all kinds of unfair means for cheating in the first three papers of Class X (Science). Responding to a question, one invigilator said mockingly: "Why wouldn't we allow our own students to cheat? We want good results from them, don't we?"

One of the students, requesting anonymity, said that they had developed a good understanding with their teachers who taught them for the whole year.

The effect that this practice has had has spread like cancer. It has been learnt that given this easily-accessible "golden opportunity", even students who had previously worked hard on their studies opted to take the unfair route.

If that was not enough, the few that still took the moral high ground have been pushed into submission. The student also told that, "There are a few students who didn't want to [and did not] cheat in the [earlier] exams; but seeing others using unfair means, they too decided to opt for [cheating] in the remaining papers," he added.

This assault on the very fabric of Pakistan's education system and the future of the nation's youth has all been made possible thanks to the illogical relaxation given to these schools by the BSEK.

When contacted regarding the findings, Imran Butt, Deputy-Controller, BSEK, said that only three to four schools were declared examination centres for their own students. Explaining he said, "The schools in some Goths, far from the city, were made examination centres for their own students because the students would have to travel miles to come to other centres." Asked if such a facility would result in irregularities at the examination centre, he said that in such cases they send their invigilators to the place. "Murad Memon Goth, Angara Goth, etc, are few places where this relaxation has been given," he said.

When told about Shah Latif School and Cadet College in Steel Town, he told this correspondent to check the list. After a few minutes, he admitted that these schools were made examination centres for their own students but maintained that this was done in response to written requests from the same schools. However, he failed to explain the grounds on which the decision was made, saying, "This was done by the previous Deputy-Controller, Bazahatullah, and he knows the reason." When told that this was the case last year as well, he was not able to explain. Nor did he have an explanation for the internal centre superintendents which eliminates the slimmest chance of vigilance over unfair means.

Even if Butt is given the benefit of the doubt, which is minimal, the question still remains why immediate action was not taken when this practice was pointed out in clear and irrefutable terms. More cheating could have been averted in the remaining papers of Mathematics and Physics.

Inside sources, requesting strict anonymity, said that some officers in the BSEK gave this allowance after taking heavy bribes. It was also learnt that these lists are prepared by the Deputy-Controller, BSEK, while the Controller Examination is the signing authority.

This practice is going on in many other areas of the city, but, at the time this report was being carried, we could not gather substantial evidence to pin point these places. The News

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Class IX exams began today
Karachi: The Secondary School Certificate Part-I (Class IX) general group annual examinations-2009 for both regular and private candidates will begin on Wednesday.

The SSC Part-I (Class IX) annual examinations-2009 for science group students will start on Thursday under the aegis of the Board of Secondary Education Karachi.

Exams for both the groups will be conducted on a new pattern. Around 170,000 candidates (both girls and boys) are registered for the SSC Part-I (Class IX) general and science groups' annual examinations, which will be held in the afternoon shift (i.e. from 2pm to 5pm) as the Class X annual examinations for science and general groups were being conducted in the morning shift (from 9am to 12noon).

The board has set up a total of 476 centres at government and private schools for these exams. Of these, 264 centres have been set up for male candidates and 212 for female candidates.

BSEK officials said that no new vigilance teams had been formed for the Class IX examinations.

The existing 182 teams (92 for boys and 90 for girls examinations centres), which were initially set up to monitor Class X examinations, had been assigned the vigilance of Class IX exams as well. When asked, the spokesman for the board said that in all 61 candidates of Class X exams were booked on charges of use of unfair means in the examinations on Tuesday.

New pattern
According to the new pattern of examinations being introduced for the first time for Class IX students, their papers will have three sections comprising multiple-choice questions (MCQs), short answers and descriptive answers.

The BSEK officials said that the theory papers carried 75 marks each, except for Biology and Chemistry subjects. Section A will have MCQs carrying 15 marks. Section B will consist of questions requiring short answers and Section C will comprise questions requiring descriptive answers. They will carry 36 marks and 24 marks, respectively.

They said theory paper of Biology carried 85 marks and its Section A pertaining to MCQs had 15 marks, Section B of short answers had 42 marks (i.e. 21 marks each for Zoology and Botany) and Section C relating to descriptive answers carried 28 marks (14 each for Zoology and Botany).

Similarly, theory paper of Chemistry carried 85 marks. Its Section A relating to MCQs carried 17 marks, Section B pertaining to short answers had 42 marks and Section C based on descriptive answers carried 26 marks.

The officials said that Biology, Chemistry and Computer papers had 100 marks each. Theory papers of Biology and Chemistry carried 85 marks and their practical exams carried 15 marks. Dawn

Lecture at Karachi University
Karachi: A former ambassador of Pakistan to the United States, Najmul Saqib, will deliver a lecture on "Financial crunch, meltdown and economic recession in the world" at the arts auditorium of Karachi University on Wednesday at 10.30am.

Karachi University practical exam schedule
Karachi: University of Karachi announced the schedule for BSc (Pass) botany practical examination 2008 for the remaining candidates of first and second year classes. According to an official announcement, Practical-IV of Botany will be held on April 8, Practical-III on April 9; Practical-II on April 10 and Practical-I on April 11. Ppi

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IBA aims to be ranked among top 10 in region
Karachi: The Institute of Business Administration (IBA) Karachi aims to be ranked among the top 10 in the region in five years' time.

This was pointed out at a reception IBA Karachi on Tuesday hosted for 21 foreign diplomats currently under training at the Foreign Service Academy, Islamabad, as part of the 20th Advanced Diplomatic Course.

The foreign diplomats were accompanied by faculty members of the FSP. Registrar, IBA Capt.(Retd) Ahmed Zaheer, Associate Deans, Dr. Mohammed Nishat and Dr. Sayeed Ghani and Director Public Affairs, Zafar A. Siddiqui, received the guests at the Center for Executive Education (CEE), IBA City Campus.

Dr. Nishat briefed the guests about historical significance of the IBA Karachi as the oldest business school outside North America. He said that IBA is moving towards the internationalization of its study programmes by enhancing its linkages with reputable foreign universities.

Dr. Sayeed Ghani gave a comprehensive briefing about IBA and declared it an Island of Excellence due to its stringent admission process and academic schedule, distinguished faculty and dynamic students, advanced research facilities and efficient job placement support for its graduates.

He highlighted Director IBA's Strategic Vision to the distinguished audience. The plan envisages that the IBA will benchmark itself against a few chosen institutions of India, Singapore, Hong Kong and Japan and aims to be ranked among the top ten business schools in the region within five years.

Dr. Ghani also discussed IBA's Social Responsibility initiatives such as Scholarships and National Talent Hunt Program (NTHP) to attract and train financially unsound but talented students from the backward areas of Pakistan.

He emphasized that IBA's MBAs and graduates are not limited to the Business Sphere of Pakistan but are contributing to the entire region. Considering the fact, IBA graduates are trained with contemporary marketing skills and cultural sensitivities.

Tajammul Altaf, Director Administration, FSA thanked the IBA administration and coordinators for enlightening them about the dynamics of IBA and its impact on Pakistan's economy and education. Souvenirs were distributed among the foreign delegates on the occasion. The Nation

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"iba is a leading institution in managment science ."
Name: farooq khan
City, Country: mardan,pakistan

SBTE ceremony honours technical book authors
Karachi: The Sindh Board of Technical Education (SBTE) in collaboration with Azeem Academy (a publishing house) organised a ceremony to honour the authors of 38 technical books and model papers on technical education.

Sindh Minister for Industries, Abdul Rauf Siddiqui, was the chief guest on the occasion, according to a statement issued on Tuesday.

The minister lauded the contributions of the authors of these publications. He said that these publications would contribute towards the promotion of the technical education and help guide youngsters.

Siddiqui also announced that he will issue letters of appreciation to each of the authors of the books to acknowledge their hard work. He hoped that the students will take full benefit from these publications.

SBTE Chairman Prof. M. Saeed Siddiqui traced the history of the development of technical education in the country with the ultimate formation of SBTE. There were 30 institutes with 721 students at the time of the inception of the SBTE. This strength has now increased to 452 institutes and over 70,000 students in the year 2009.

Arts Council students shine in SBTE exams
Karachi: Three students of the Central Arts Institute at the Arts Council have secured first positions in their respective subjects in the annual Sindh Board of Technical Education (SBTE). A small award ceremony was held at the Arts Council on Tuesday to celebrate their achievement. Sadaf Mansoor, Farah Shahab and Hafiz Zeeshan Jawed secured first positions in Fine Arts, Textile Design and Graphic Design respectively. The News

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