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Punjab colleges students attendance

Students not interested to attend classes
Lahore, March 07: The teams of Higher Education wing of the Punjab Education Department has resumed monitoring of the colleges to check attendance of teachers in accordance with the timetable.

On Monday various teams visited a number of colleges in Lahore and Sheikuhupura districts in the morning. Additional secretaries Yawar Hussain, Ch Mohammad Akram and deputy secretaries headed the monitoring teams.

It was, however, surprising that students and not the teachers were found absent from the classes. Further interrogation revealed that after the send-up examinations and submission of admission forms to the board and university, students are not keen to attend classes. With the reduction of backlog of work, ranging from 15 days to one month, the board and university received admission forms accordingly. Consequently, the attendance became thin in the classes three months ahead of the closure of institutions for summer vacations. Virtually the academic session which starts from September 15, has been reduced to mere four and a half month in a year. Teachers are unable to cover the prescribed courses during this limited period and the students have to join the academies and tuition centres for completion of their courses.

As such the Education Department is contemplating to chalk out a mechanism to hold the send-up examinations in February and if necessary the admission forms prior to the send-up examinations to be sent provisionally could be subjected to the withdrawal of a candidate on the basis of send-up examination results.

To check the absence of students, it was also considered imperative to remove the maintained attendance register, imposition of fine for consecutive absence and warning to parents that students' name could be struck off from the college roll for their absence from classes.

The Higher Education Department is also considering appropriate measures to rectify the absence of students, teachers and to run the classes from September 1 to May 30 for a period of nine months at least. The nation

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Each district to have varsity sub-campus
Lahore: Higher Education Secretary Ahad Khan Cheema, speaking at the first meeting of the recently established Punjab Higher Education Council (PHEC), said on Saturday that at least one university or sub-campus of a university would be established at each district headquarters during the next five years.

The meeting also discussed college sector education, admission on self-finance to universities, uniformity in the status of universities, BS (Hons) four years programme, quality assurance and training of college teachers.

The Higher Education secretary said the Punjab government had constituted the PHEC for better coordination and coherent policy making at the provincial level.

Highlighting the term of reference of the PHEC, he said the council would formulate policies guidelines and priorities of higher education institutions for promotion of access, quality and good governance. He said members of the council would suggest and undertake measures for improving performance and efficiency of institutions and devise a regular system of capacity-building of their teaching faculty.

Ahad Cheema said the PHEC would facilitate the introduction of demand-oriented study programmes in order to meet the needs of the market and promote the study of basic and applied sciences. It would also evaluate the performance of the government colleges and consider cases for their upgrade and placement under board of governors, he said, adding that in addition to that, BS (Hons) four-year programme would be introduced in public colleges in phases.

The Higher Education secretary said three streams in college education, namely centres of excellence, community colleges and public-private partnership, would be introduced. He said the most vibrant colleges would be given the status of the centre of excellence and four year graduation and market-oriented subjects would be introduced in these centers.

He said in community colleges, two-year graduation and technical subjects would be introduced and provision of adequate infrastructure would also be ensured in such colleges. Under the public-private partnership, proposal for commerce education in second shift was under consideration, he maintained. Ahad Cheema said: "It is encouraging that the government has succeeded in setting up universities at division level," adding "In order to enhance the higher education facility a university or sub-campus of a university would be established at each district headquarters."

The vice-chancellors of the different universities welcomed the establishment of the PHEC and hoped that it would play a role for the provision of quality higher education for people.

Additional Secretary Higher Education Muhammad Akram Chaudhry, Punjab University Vice-Chancellor Dr Mujahid Kamran, UET VC Lt Gen (r) Muhammad Akram, Lahore College for Women University VC Bushra Mateen, Education University VC Dr Munawar Mirza, University of Gujrat VC Dr Nizamuddin and other vice-chancellors of public and private universities attended the meeting.

It is learnt that the participants expressed concerns over the minimum presence of private universities in the PHEC and suggested the new council should be a forum for all and private sector universities of the province should be included as members of the council.

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PU staff's promotion
Lahore: The Punjab University (PU) Service Structure Committee, which has met under the chairmanship of Prof Dr Nasir Ahmad on Saturday, sent its final recommendations to promote employees in BS 1-5 to next higher scales to the concerned authorities which will pave the way for rapid promotion of thousands of employees who had been stuck up in their existing scales for the past several years.

It was further intimated in the meeting that promotion cases of employees in BS 6-16 were also being scrutinised speedily to finalise the recommendations for their expeditious promotion to next scales.

PU Vice Chancellor Prof Dr Mujahid Kamran will also personally hand over the orders of regular appointment to 147 ad hoc and temporary employees at a ceremony to be held at 11:00am on March 8 at the Undergraduate Block of the varsity. Under the directions of Vice-Chancellor, the practical fee for Laboratory Assistants has been raised from the existing Rs 02 per practical to Rs 10.

In addition, rules have also been formulated for Rs 20 million's Employees Behbood Fund (EBF) under which interest free loans worth higher amounts than before would be extended to enable the employees meet the educational and marriage expenses of their children.

The university will contribute an amount of Rs 30 lac to EBF to replenish every year the total amount available for issuance of free of interest loans. Similarly with a view to encouraging the honest officials from BS 01-16, the best employee of the year award, amounting to Rs 5000, will be given in each category of the varsity employees.

The meeting was further informed that details regarding the construction of residential quarters for low income employees had also been finalised and sent to the Project Director office for implementation. Later, Prof Dr Mujahid Kamran has said the goal of 100 percent literacy can be achieved only through consistent implementation of educational policy and will as well as commitment of the political leadership of the country.

Addressing a farewell ceremony held for the passing out graduates of the PU College of Information Technology (PUCIT) in the Old Campus on Saturday, the VC further said in 62 years of independence, the vitally important education sector had suffered badly due to deliberate neglect of successive governments. He emphasised the doubling of the existing annual spending of 2.0 percent of GDP on education through legislation in the parliament.

"There is also a desperate need for raising the socio-economic status of the teacher community in order to attract highly qualified and dedicated faculty to the teaching profession at the university level", he added. The PU VC further said the present remarkable socio-economic progress of the western countries was solely because of their advancement in educational sector.

Earlier, speaking on the occasion, PUCIT Principal Prof Dr Mansoor Sarwar said their graduates were in great demand by several reputed national and multinational companies. He impressed upon the newly qualified students to make the noble cause of spread of education a focal point of their practical life for enabling Pakistan to attain its rightful place as a prosperous and modern country in the comity of nations.

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Private schools quota
Lahore: Chief Minister's Taskforce on Elementary Education Raja Muhammad Anwar has said that ten percent quota has been especially reserved for the deserving students of private schools in the Punjab Educational Endowment Fund (PEEF) to facilitate the private sector.

Addressing the teachers' ceremony at The Punjab School, Township, on Saturday, he further said these students were also eligible to apply against the general quota of merit. Raja Anwar further said 1.9 lakh contract teachers had been made permanent by the government so that they could perform their duties with peace of mind.

He also said that the government was spending a cumulative amount of Rs 117 billion on different educational projects in the province.

Despite government's efforts to promote education, lot more is still needed to be done and for that, private sector should diligently come forward to lend a helping hand to it, he maintained.

The function was also addressed by CEO of TPS Ahsan Ullah Waqas. Later, shields were also distributed among the teachers. The news

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LUMS annual play
Lahore: The Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS) Dramaline Society organised its annual play 'Con'Fused'.

The play, written by Shoaib Hashmi and directed by Junaid Fazl was an adaptation of Peter Shaffer's 'Black Comedy' translated in Urdu and was based on erroneous identities and the unveiling of hidden truths through a hilarious series of events. The captivating plot was further complemented by exemplary performances by the cast elevating the entertainment quotient and offering an absolute treat to an enthusiastic audience who had gathered in huge numbers at the complex.

Asser Malik, who played Abbas, the main protagonist excelled in his performance; a complete power house of talent and a delight on and off stage. Shehzad was cast as a homosexual, while Khurdam added exuberance to the play through his comic antics. Other members of the cast included Wajiha, Anum, Talal, Mariya and Bilal, all of whom gave outstanding performances.

The play received a huge round of applause by the chief guests and members of the theatre industry such as Shahnaz Sheikh, Salman Shahid, Usman Peerzada and Shah Sharabeel. Daily times

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LDA model schools
Lahore: Academic activities at the Lahore Development Authority's model schools at Gulshan-i-Ravi and Sabzazaar will begin next month.

Registration and admissions of students at the Model School for Girls, Gulshan-i-Ravi, and the Model School for Boys, Sabzazaar, are already under way.

Meanwhile, the LDA has sought applications for the post of a principal, 17 posts of prep class teachers (female), 41 posts of science, arts and computer subjects and three posts of Arabic teachers for its Sabzazaar school.

Candidates with requisite qualification can submit their applications by March 16, according to an announcement on Saturday.

The LDA had in July last year decided to set up a school at the building it constructed in Sabzazaar by giving a second thought to an earlier decision to shift its offices there. Dawn


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