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HEC new departments for quality education

HEC to set up new departments to improve quality of education
Islamabad, April 22: The Higher Education Commission (HEC) would soon set-up departments in various parts of the country to improve the quality of education in higher education sector, said HEC Chairman Dr. Javaid Laghari.

Dr Laghari was addressing the students and teachers at the convocation of the Federal Urdu University of Arts, Sciences and Technology here Thursday.

He said that HEC has already established Quality Assurance Cells in 70 universities while the rest would be constituted in near future.

He said that HEC s main focus was to provide quality higher education and research facilities to the young generation, as without quality education and research we cannot face the challenges of the modern day world. The progress of the developed countries depends on quality education and research and HEC is trying to enable the youth of the country to meet the future challenges, equipping them with quality education and research facilities, he said.

As many as 16 students received Gold Medals and 479 received degrees in various disciplines including Computer Science, Business Administration, Applied Physics, Electrical Engineering, Economics and Urdu.

The recipients of Gold Medals included Aziz-ur-Rehman and M. Arsalan Qureshi (BS Computer Sciences), Ajam Shazad Akbar and Tariq Farroque (MSc Computer Sciences), Madeeha Mubarak (Department of Applied Sciences), Uzair Ahmed and Amina Waheed Khan (Department of Applied Physics), Muhammad Jawad (Department of Electrical Engineering), Komal Fatima, Rubina Tabassum, Muhammad Anwar, Muhammad Kashif Matloob, Muhammad Atiq ur Rehman, Muhammad Atif, Mahwish Iqbal and Hina Shahid (Department of Business Administration).

Earlier, FUUAST Vice Chancellor Professor Dr. Mohammad Qaiser in his welcome address said, despite the limited sources, the university has improved a lot in past few years.

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Lawmakers divided over HEC replacement
Islamabad: Realising the fact that powers and functions of the Higher Education Commission (HEC) cannot be devolved to provinces as these have been protected as federal subject in the 18th Amendment, the Implementation Commission has now changed its mind and decided to establish the Commission for Standard Higher Education (CSHE) at the federal level to replace the HEC, causing a split among lawmakers.

The Implementation Commission member, Senator Rehmatullah Kakar, clearly stated that they would have no objection if the CSHE was established in consultation with all stakeholders, including the HEC. Some quarters are trying to create unnecessary hype over the issue of HEC but I believe the Implementation Commission would take every decision in line with the constitution, he said.

He pointed out that Implementation Commission Chairman Mian Raza Rabbani made commitment with the federal cabinet and members of the commission that any decision to establish the CSHE in place of the HEC would be taken in consultation with the HEC. But according to insiders, the HEC has not been contacted so far in this regard and its officials are trying to approach the Implementation Commission to present its viewpoint.

Sources claimed that Raza Rabbani conveyed to members of the commission that the HEC would not be devolved and instead all of its powers and functions would be transferred to the CHSE to be established under the Cabinet Division.

Sources said that the decision to establish any new institution in replacement of the HEC that enjoys an independent status under the Presidential Ordinance 2002 would lead to another controversy over the mandate of the Implementation Commission, which they believe does not provide powers to take administrative decisions.

According to the term of reference the Implementation Commission shall perform such functions as may be necessary for the implementation of Clause 8 of Article 270(AA) of the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan and such other steps needed for the implementation of the Constitution (18th Amendment) Act, 2010.

The commission would examine the policy, programmes, capacity building and other measures that are required to be taken by the federal government and/or the provincial governments for the implementation of the devolution process.

It will review all laws, rules and regulations being affected as a consequence of this transition. The commission will create and monitor the mechanism and institutional procedures required to complete the process of devolution by June 30, 2011.

An Implementation Commission member and legal expert, S M Zafar said that the body should put its hands off the HEC as their mandate does not allow them to even touch any subject that is federal in nature and protected in the Federal Legislative List (FLL).

The Implementation Commission cannot take any decision regarding the HEC as all its functions and powers fall in the category of federal subject. The purpose of constitution of the body is to ensure implementation of the 18th Amendment and if it gets involved in administrative affairs then it would surely trespass its mandate, he said.

He said that the prime minister, who is also controlling authority of the HEC, could take decision to dissolve the HEC as he enjoyed all authority to use such administrative powers. I think the Implementation Commission should keep itself away from this administrative affairs, he said.

Dr. Farooq Sattar, another member of the commission, said that the HEC played a pivotal role in promotion of higher education in Pakistan and it should continue its work as an independent and viable institution in the higher education sector. To a question, he said, if the government wants to establish new higher education commission then it must have independent status, otherwise they would oppose such move at all forums. The news

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Changes to UK student visa route come into effect
Islamabad: Changes to the UK's Tier 4 student visa route came into effect on Thursday.

These changes are designed to reduce the abuse of the student immigration system by those seeking primarily to work and also to protect legitimate students from being misled by questionable institutions.

As part of these changes those coming to study at degree level will have to speak English at an upper intermediate level. Students are aware of this new requirement. If a student is called in to attend an interview and cannot show that his English language ability is at the required standard, or the student refuses to attend the interview, his application will be refused.

According to a press release issued by the UK High Commission, the UK recognises the important contribution Pakistani students make to the UK and we want to encourage genuine students to come to the UK to study.

To ensure that applications are processed as quickly as possible we ask that students carefully follow the appropriate guidance filling out the application form fully and supplying all the relevant information.

The fourth tier of the new points-based UK immigration service focuses upon overseas students who wish to gain entry clearance to study in the UK.

Tier 4 visas replace the UK student visa service and place more emphasis upon the responsibility of the educational body in question for the applicants they permit to study. Daily times

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Beaconites exhibit sporting expertise
Rawalpindi: Beaconhouse School System, Primary Branch, Rawalpindi, celebrated its Annual Sports Day here with great enthusiasm Aftab Shaaban Mirani and Azra Sarfraz Sajjad were the chief guests on the occasion.

More than 650 students from classes III, IV and V participated in the two-day activities. The Annual Sports Day was given an exciting start with the flag bearers and the torchbearers flying into the ground from the roof of a 70 feet high building on ropes and mechanism to make a grand entry into the ground.

The Sports Day was declared open by Aftab Shaban Mirani, which was followed by the lighting of the sports torch and a march past by all the participants of the sports day.

The sports events started off with an energetic and disciplined display of various Martial Arts Skills. Students stunned the audience with their spectacular display and stunts of martial arts. Students had an opportunity to participate in a number of athletic events and an array of colourful presentations. Some of the highlights of the show included repelling, pulley action and archery.

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Magical colours of spring all around
Islamabad: The Annual Parents Day and Graduation Ceremony of the Roots Thematic Montessori, Sector F-7/1, were celebrated with enthusiasm at the Pakistan National Council of the Arts (PNCA) here on Wednesday.

Federal Minister for Information and Broadcasting Dr. Firdous Ashiq Awan was the chief guest on the occasion. The ceremony was attended by Roots School System Executive Director Chaudhry Faisal Mushtaq, Ali Civiler, second secretary at the Embassy of Turkey, MNA Sardar Saleem Haider, Senator Talha Mehmood and Dr. Shaukat Bangash, CEO of the Quaid-i-Azam International Hospital.

The theme of the event was Magical Colours of Spring . The young Rootsians displayed their stunning performances focusing on different cultures. Students of the Advance Montessori Mariam Jaffar and Zubair Ali hosted the show marvellously.

The welcome performance of Spring Ballerina took parents by surprise.

A lively performance was presented by the students on the Bee Happy theme. It is the bees, which have to make 10 million trips to get enough honey for a single jar, and no wonder we call them busy bees.

The students also performed aerobics. As spring reminds us of sunshine, rainbows, butterflies, birds and most of all flowers because they add colour and beauty to the season. The students gave a lively performance in The Proud Flower .

Karate is a martial art developed in Okinawa, Japan. It improves health and fitness, muscular strength and flexibility and above all it teaches discipline as a value-added component. Students of the Advance Montessori presented a breathtaking karate performance on the occasion.

A scintillating performance on Basant Bahar was presented by the Advance Montessori students, which spread the magical colours of spring all around. Students of the Advance Montessori also presented a performance on Tribute to Parents. The news

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