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Pakistan has highest school dropout rate in world

35,000 high school pupils in Pakistan drop out of the education system each year
Peshawar, Sep 08: Pakistan has one of the highest school dropout rates in the world, thanks to corporal punishment. Beatings at school are considered culturally acceptable to ensure obedience, and legislation banning this practice is hence poorly implemented.

According to a NGO advocating the rights of children, 35,000 high school pupils in Pakistan drop out of the education system each year due to corporal punishment. Such beatings at schools are also responsible for one of the highest dropout rates in the world, which stands at 50 percent during the first five years of education. It is said that culturally accepted form of child abuse also contributed to the high dropout rate among children and the fact that 70,000 street children were present in the country.

Yet, despite growing awareness regarding the issue, many schoolteachers remain convinced that some degree of corporal punishment is necessary to instruct children.

"The teacher needs to ensure obedience and ensure children receive proper guidance. For this, an occasional light beating or other physical admonishment is necessary," Abdul Akbar, 40, who teaches at a boy's private school at Hayatabad said.

The government of the NWFP had banned corporal punishment in primary schools in 1999. A year later, the governments of Balochistan and Punjab issued directives to all teachers not to use corporal punishment on children, and followed up with disciplinary action against three teachers.

The Sindh government also issued similar orders in 2007. But the fact is that, despite a campaign at government level and awareness-raising efforts by NGOs, the directives remain poorly implemented.

Most children at schools across the country, both girls and boys, are beaten. "The law, as it exists now, permits parents or guardians, including teachers, to beat a child in "good intent". This prevented police from acting on complaints of physical abuse. It is also a matter of attitude. Teachers say they need to beat children to teach them, but there is a need to educate teachers and pupils about child rights.

In 2005, the UN Children's Fund (UNICEF) with Save the Children and the Pakistan government, conducted the first in-depth survey to determine how many children were subjected to corporal punishment. All 3,582 children interviewed said they had been beaten at school. Seven percent said they had suffered serious injury as a consequence. It is widely believed the situation is even worse at the hundreds of unregulated seminary schools, or 'madrasas', scattered across Pakistan.

The Pakistan Paediatric Association found last year that over 88 percent of school-going children surveyed reported suffering physical abuse. Experts believe inadequate teacher training, the lack of legislation banning corporal punishment and the perception that it must be used to teach children, are all factors behind the widespread existence of corporal punishment. F.P. report

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"Trinity University maintains a policy of meeting the financial needs of any international student. It is amazing to see that students from all over the world get the privilege of studying in such a top class institution irrespective of their financial backgrounds. "
Name: Puru
Email: purushottamshah@gmail.com
City, Country: Nepal

"mentaland psycological turture by teacher is another factor contributes towards dropout of students. It is imporatant that teacher should be well equiped with knowledge of child psycology os that students can be dealt accordingly. One thing more which is almost disappeared from teaching and that is activity based teaching. In our teaching culture the only method we observed in schools is teaching through dictation and that is the major fualt. Teacher do not know that every individual has its own learning styles and that may be different from other fellows so only one method could not address this issue."
Name: zahid
Email: zahids40@hotmail.com
City, Country: sialkot

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Edexcel Examination Distinction
Islamabad: Mohsin Rahim, a student of Froebel's International School, obtained five straight As in 'A' level Edexcel Examination 2009, says a press release. He has been awarded international scholarship at Trinity University, Texas (USA). Mohsin Rahim is the younger son of Inam-ur-Rehman, director general, Staff Welfare Organisation (Establishment Division), Islamabad. His elder son namely Ashan Rahim is studying in third year at the Dartmouth College, New Hamshire (USA). He was awarded Middle East and Asia merit scholarship during the year 2007-08.


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USAID to resume School Hygiene Programme
Islamabad: United States Agency for International Development (USAID), in collaboration with Education Department, Khairpur, plans to resume the School Hygiene Promotion Programme (SHPP) activities of Pakistan Safe Drinking Water & Hygiene Promotion Project (PSDW-HPP) during the current academic session.

According to details, 2,700 to 3,000 schoolchildren would benefit from the PSDW-HPP during the current academic year 2009-10. The activities will include the distribution of soap slickers and demonstrations of germ glow machines to communicate a healthful message to children and parents.

In a press release issued Monday, Amanullah Bhayo, Executive District Officer Education of the project area, appreciated the efforts of USAID for the successful implementation of PSDW-HPP. He said the project had been successfully executed in March 2009 but in order to enhance the value of hygiene promotion activities, it would be resumed for the next academic session. The news


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Zardari calls for drive to promote literacy
Islamabad: President Asif Ali Zardari has proposed to the prime minister to form a National Literacy Council to lead an effective drive to promote education across the country.

In a message on the International Literacy Day, the president said council members should include chief ministers and federal and provincial ministers of education, finance and planning.

Highlighting the importance of the day, President Zardari said it should be used by education planners and decision makers to assess achievements and shortcomings in the field of basic education for assuring prosperity and security of the future generation.

Pointing out deficiencies Pakistan suffered in literacy and primary education, the president said: "According to Human Development Index, Pakistan is ranked 136th out of 179 countries of the world. We have so far been able to make little progress in changing the situation."

Mr Zardari said that there were "over 50 million Pakistanis who cannot read or write", adding that the situation should be reviewed for setting development priorities and re-fixing strategies.

He mentioned Article 26 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, 1948, which says free elementary education is a fundamental right, with literacy as a core component of education.

Highlighting efforts undertaken by the Pakistan People's Party to promote education, he urged parliament to "declare free primary education as a fundamental human right".

The president said inequalities in education stood in the way of balanced and equitable economic development.

"A literate nation is essential for both prosperity and for the integrity and security of the nation," he said.

Urging education planners to adopt a multi-pronged strategy for eradicating illiteracy, Mr Zardari said: "Together, with higher priority to the formal primary education, we must also expand access to non-formal basic education programmes and launch a long term and sustainable programmes which should be purposeful so as to equip illiterate farmers, labourers, and rural women with knowledge and skills which can enhance their income and employability." App


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College rowdyism: Police yet to arrest culprit
Islamabad: Islamabad police are yet to fix responsibility for rowdyism at F-10/4 Boys College as investigation is going on at a slow pace.

SP Nasir Aftab said on Monday that police were investigating the case involving Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) MNA Anjum Aqeel Khan on merit.

Asked if the police had sought formal permission from National Assembly (NA) speaker to arrest Aqeel, he said police were yet to establish who was 'responsible' and if Aqeel was found guilty during investigations, permission for his arrest would be sought.

"We are investigating the case on merit. Let investigation be completed," Aftab said.

City police booked Aqeel and 16 others for attacking and abusing the college teachers on Wednesday. Daily times


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Orientation for new students held at SZABIST
Islamabad: Education is necessary for the young generation if they wish to play an active role in the development and progress of their country.

This was stated by Kenyan High Commissioner Mrs Mishi Masika Mwatsahu while addressing the annual orientation ceremony of Shaheed Zulfikar Ali Bhutto Institute of Science & Technology (SZABIST), Islamabad as the chief guest. The ceremony was held to welcome the student newcomers and enlighten them about the rules and regulations of the Institute.

The Kenyan high commissioner, who is also a member of the Institute alumni, told the students that they are joining the right institution for pursuing their studies where they would have all opportunities to excel in life in a friendly and professional environment. She advised the students to pay attention to their studies and work hard to achieve their goals.

Campus Head SZABIST Islamabad Syed Asad Hussain on the occasion said the Institute has also focused on quality education and is trying its best to provide a good future to its students. He said during the last few years, the students of SZABIST have shown excellent performances and are serving in leading national and international organisations.


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Students speak their hearts out for peace in country
Rawalpindi: The students of The City School, Gulrez Junior Branch, spoke their hearts out for the love for Pakistan and its prosperity in a function held at their school campus here on Monday.

The message was same, and loud and clear, from each and everyone speaker that they despise war, terrorism and wants to see peaceful Pakistan progressing in every field."We need to put our energies together for a greater, cleaner, better and calmer Pakistan in which we can live with peace," said one of the students.

The best part of the event was that the children were dressed in different cultural attires and they spoke enthusiastically for much needed unity and nationalism in the country."We are the future and we have to make sure that we make our country a better place to live in," said one of the students.

The City School Head Mistress Seema Zia said that so many our officers and soldiers have sacrificed their lives for our country and this function is organised just to pay tribute to our soldiers. "Remember their dedication for the country and to mark the Pakistan Defence Day in a befitting manner so that our children understand the importance of the freedom of our country and realize the sacrifices made by our forces," she said.

Brigadier (r) Mazhar-ul-Haq was invited as a chief guest at the function. He shared his experiences of both 1965 and 1971 wars in which he faced the enemy and commanded a battalion brigade.

He talked about the war and the sacrifices made by the officers and soldiers alike. "Fortunately we are blessed with the best people in armed forces who bravely face the enemy and push them out of the country. Even in this current operation in Swat Valley our soldiers and officers have sacrificed their lives for the country. Due to their determination, the enemy has fled and finally the peace has prevailed in the valley," he said. The news


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