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Karachi university teachers role, performance

Are teachers shirking their responsibilities?
Karachi, Dec 05: The University of Karachi (KU) is going through one of the most difficult periods of its 60 years history. Of course, these are testing times for students and teachers, who have had to exhibit a lot of patience and forbearance in performing their duties in the current climate of deteriorating law and order situation in campuses. But there is a greater malaise that needs to be looked at.

KU has the largest number of students on its roll - about 25,000 souls- more than any other university in the country. The calibre of students, in general, is far from adequate. Many students enter the university because they have sufficient marks to meet the admission criteria. But many also seem to have abrasive behaviour and mannerisms, and in a majority of cases, have scant linguistic proficiency.

Yet, perhaps one of the most crippling ailments that has seeped into the university education system is the lack of interest shown by teachers in attending their classes. A common observation is that even those teachers who reside inside the campus fail to turn up for their classes 'on time'.

What is the role of Karachi University Teachers Society (KUTS) in this matter? None, says KUTS President Dr Abid Hasnain. "KUTS can not tell its members to come on time or teach properly. It is their (teachers') own responsibility. We safeguard the interests of teachers, not the students".

Teachers in the university seem to be divided in their opinion about the exact duty of a teacher. Some informed that they were responsible for preparing their lectures and delivering them in the classrooms. "We are not responsible for the grooming of the students. It is the duty of their parents," a teacher said. Some teachers, a wafer thin minority, believed that they should be the ones to develop the moral and ethical standards of their students.

KUTS Secretary Dr Fayyaz Veid was concerned about the teachers' performance, and thought that the teachers, though not officially, should be advised by the KUTS to take care of their responsibilities. "We are not clerks and we are not supposed to come to the departments if we do not have the classes. We prepare our lecture at our homes at night and have the right to come just before the class, or before one or two hours. We should, on individual bases advise our teachers to perform their duties honestly", he elaborated.

So far so good, Mr Secretary. Now it is the duty of the thinkers and statesmen to come forward to see if the KUTS has fallacy in its claim or it should be the case.

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Student gala opened amid fanfare
Karachi: Deputy Speaker Sindh Assembly Shahla Raza has conceded that the government was responsible for holding meaningful and educational events to entertain and teach the young minds.

Raza was speaking at the inaugural session of the three-day Student Gala 2009 organised by Islami Nizam-e-Taleem (ITN) at Askari Park on Friday. She praised INT Director Misbah-ul-Huda Siddiqui who had taken such initiative and organised a mega event on such a large scale.

Vice Chancellor University of Karachi (KU) Prof Pirzada Qasim termed the gala a gift to the next generations as the young students will learn to speak, be confident and a good organiser through the three day event.

He urged the audience that included parents, teachers and students to realise their responsibility and join hands to teach the young minds the ways of the world that are based on Qur'an and Sunnah.

The event attracted enthusiastic students and families who were delighted with the healthy activities of the gala including books, food, posters competition and many other interesting activities.

Earlier INT Director Misbah-ul-Huda Siddiqui spoke about the reason behind organising such a mega event. According to him ITN's aim was to seek partnership with the private schools and 8000 schools throughout Sindh were contacted to form an effective network. INT also intends to seek support from the parents and the educationists to devise better ways of teaching the young minds and building of youth with positive thinking and, constructive and creative capabilities.

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JUW added another block
Karachi: In the meantime, Jinnah University for Women (JUW) expanding its educational net, silently and without trumpeting its achievement. This private university has added another block to its existing buildings, and plans to house the Department of Mass Communication. The university has also added two more disciplines - International Relations and Statistics in its ever-increasing departments. Let us hope for the best from JUW.

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Medical College Karachi symposium
Karachi: A three-day sixth annual symposium of the Liaquat National Hospital (LNH) and Medical College Karachi will be held from December 11 to 13. An announcement on Friday said that a former Sindh health minister and physician Prof. S. M. Rab will inaugurate the symposium. The symposium will focus on one of the major dilemmas facing the profession in Pakistan today that is maintaining a balance between cost and quality, the statement said. The news

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NED meeting, Lecture
Karachi: A memorial meeting for Prof Mohammad Nauman at the NED's city campus (adjacent to the D.J. Science College) at 2pm.

Lecture of the month on "Terrorism and mental health with special focus on Pakistan" organised by the Pakistan Medical Association's Karachi chapter at the PMA House at 1.30pm. Dawn

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Critical shortage of qualified teachers
Islamabad: The country is facing critical shortage of qualified educators, especially in the rural areas of the country, as a result schools in rural areas hire unqualified teachers, said Sadia Riaz, Project Coordinator Education of Muslim Aid here on Friday.

She said the recruitment of unqualified teachers has resulted in de-professionalisation of teaching. The practice has negatively affected the quality of education in our country. Badly trained, underpaid and poorly motivated teachers are unlikely to teach effectively, she said.

Muslim Aid has started teachers training project in rural areas of Islamabad and Murree. Muslim Aid teachers training project targets the education-related Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), to which Muslim Aid is committed, she said.

Initially Muslim Aid has started training of teachers in 37 schools of Murree and Islamabad. For the purpose, 250 primary schoolteachers and 60 principals, vice-principals and heads are selected for the training purpose.

Dr Asad Abass Rizvi, Dr Muneer Kyani, Tasneem Sarwar, Sabahat Yasmin and Farid Ahmed Barohi are among the trainers. "We are focusing on effective teaching methodologies, modern concepts of education, capacity-building of teachers, leadership and academic management, lesson planning, classroom management, subject specific training and understand child psychology."

Programme Manager Education Asad Farooq said that the education-related MDGs could not be achieved without adequate numbers of properly trained and qualified teachers. Muslim Aid teachers training project is designed to develop and provide training programmes, especially for unqualified teachers who teach in both formal and non-formal schools. The project seeks to reclaim the teaching profession and to bridge the gap between formal and non-formal education.

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PhD scholars case
Rawalpindi: The Lahore High Court (LHC) here on Friday allowed two PhD scholars to proceed to South Korea after they were stopped by the Higher Education Commission (HEC) and their names were put on watch-list by the Federal Investigation Agency.

Justice Asad Munir of the LHC's Rawalpindi bench accepted the petition of the scholars Ziauddin and Mumtaz Ahmed who were not allowed to return to South Korea where they have been studying PhD in engineering on the scholarships offered by the HEC.

A lawyer representing the HEC told the court that according to a bond furnished by the students all scholars had to serve in Pakistan for two years after completing their studies abroad whether or not they got any job in their own country.

The judge observed that the petitioners were only scholars not human traffickers or smugglers to put their names on exit control and watch list and stopping them from leaving the country.

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FJWU faculty appointment
Rawalpindi: Three faculty members of the Fatima Jinnah Women's University (FJWU), Rawalpindi, have been selected for the pre-STEP PhD scholars programme of the Higher Education Commission (HEC).

An official of the FJWU said that the selected faculty members are Samina Naseem, Saadia Panni and Salma Nazar Khan. The three have raised the profile of the FJWU by having a triple representation of the institution in the selected pool of 80 finally selected scholars from all over Pakistan, it was further stated.

Samina Naseem and Saadia Panni have been accepted by the Michigan State University at East Lansing, USA, while Salma got admission in University of Arkansas.

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Bara School looted
Bara: After the destruction of four schools with explosives, unidentified armed men looted an under-construction school in Bara subdivision in Khyber Agency early Friday. Residents said the gunmen came in four vehicles and decamped with construction material worth Rs1 million after overpowering the security guard of the Bara Model School.

The looting of public offices and destruction of schools has almost become a routine in Bara over the past few weeks despite the ongoing operation against militants in the area. The local administration has so far failed to arrest the culprits or stop them from destroying public property.

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College students protest
Abbottabad: The students of Commerce College and Government Polytechnic Institute here Friday demanded action against local police for allegedly manhandling their colleagues.

The protest demo was staged near the press club and district police office to register the resentment. Speaking at a news conference the students said Mirpur police led by Assistant Sub-inspector Yousaf raided the hostel of Aqsa College and broke open the locks of the main gate, arresting 22 students.

The students accused the police of manhandling their colleagues during search and snatching mobiles and cash. They said the police also took into custody their colleagues and kept them in illegal confinement. The news

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