Matric result on 25th
Lahore, July 10: The Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education (BISE) Lahore will announce the result of the matriculation annual examination on July 25. It is learnt the rest of seven BISEs of the province will also announce the result of the matriculation examination the same day.
Colleges start admission even before BISE results
Lahore: While the result of Intermediate Annual Examination 2012 has yet to be announced by all the eight boards of intermediate and secondary education (BISEs) of Punjab, several public and private colleges and universities have started offering admissions to undergraduate programmes.
This haste on part of the educational institutions not just highlights lack of monitoring and indifference on part of Punjab government but also hassle the students will most likely be exposed to owing to not announcement of results by closing dates for admissions approaching fast.
Punjab University (PU) last week announced pre-admission entrance test schedule for various academic programmes, including BS programmes, for which passing intermediate examination is prerequisite, and July 10 was set as last date to submit entrance test forms by the university. While on Sunday the Kinnaird College for Women also advertised its admission schedule for undergraduate, postgraduate and MPhil programmes according to which July 16 is the last date to submit the admission forms.
Besides Punjab University and Kinnaird College, a large number of private colleges and universities have also already advertised admissions for undergraduate programmes.
It is learnt that the BISEs in Punjab would announce the result of Intermediate Annual Examination 2012, on the basis of which students would be eligible to apply for undergraduate programmes, around August 25, 2012. One wonders what stops education institutes from offering undergraduate admissions after results of intermediate.
A number of students and their parents expressing concern over early admissions by educational institutes urged the Punjab government to wake up and take notice of the situation. They believe this haste by education institutes is causing great unrest among the students who are still in the dark about fate of their intermediate results. The stakeholders argue that such rampant admission offers will also cost them financially as the students would have to buy prospectus and admission forms etc of many institutes despite the fact they were unaware of their intermediate exam's result. "It would have been better provided the institutes had announced admissions after announcement of results," said a student, Tauseef, who is waiting for his result of intermediate exam.
According to him, admissions after results are always ideal as students know their marks obtained and can plan for admissions accordingly keeping in mind merit to be set by colleges and universities.
Another student said if the admissions were offered after announcement of results the students would have been in a better position and would have applied for undergraduate programmes cautiously especially in terms of financial constraints.
It is pertinent to mention here that a couple of years ago the Punjab government had formed Punjab Higher Education Council (PHEC) which, besides many other tasks, was mandated to streamline the admission process and ensure uniformity to facilitate the students seeking admissions to colleges and universities.
However with no active presence owing to sheer apathy on part of those responsible, the PHEC has almost become a redundant body. The stakeholders have urged the Punjab chief minister to look into the issue of early admissions by colleges and universities and also take action against those responsible to make PHEC a redundant body.
Students urged to be aware of new UK visa rules
Lahore: Renowned education consultant Syed Abidi has advised Pakistani students, looking for opportunities of study at small private colleges in the United Kingdom and other foreign countries, to be careful in selecting study destinations in the wake of new restrictions being put in place, especially by the UK.
In an exclusive interview, he warned students not to take risks as visa regulations would not allow such colleges to recruit students under the recent restrictions which might impact many small colleges issuing Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) letters or offer letters in the years to come.
Syed Abidi, who is Chief Executive Officer of Falcon Education and Consultancy Services, talked in detail about changes – such as procedure of visa application; English language requirements; course duration for which visa is issued; status of spouse of PhD students; post study work; paid part time work; online submission of visas; and interview requirement, etc.
Irrespective of IELTS or no-IELTS, he said, all Pakistani students would now be interviewed by the British High Commission (BHC) Islamabad for visa. He said all student visa applications shall now be submitted online. The information given once could not be changed which means all applications should be done after careful examination, he advised the students.
About the paid part-time work, Abidi said students taking their degrees and diplomas at private colleges would not be allowed to work part time. "However all public sector colleges and universities will allow students to work part time but closely monitor his/her attendance and whereabouts for a report to be sent to UK Border Agency (UKBA) regularly", he said, adding that students therefore should not depend or think they can work more than the allowed hours to support themselves.
He said spouse accompanying a student shall also be restricted to work part time and the student shall have to produce evidence of his/ her living expenses for the period of study in the UK.
However, he said, part time jobs for students were not available easily and even qualified people were not finding jobs from floor level upwards.
The veteran education consultant said the responsibility of universities as sponsors had therefore been greatly increased, saying, "It is expected that private colleges which are not highly trusted sponsors will be abolished by the end of this year."
About the post study work opportunities, he said, "Post Study Work (PSW) visa scheme has been gradually withdrawn and future students may not get PSW. They will have to transfer to Tier 1 status."
Abidi, who is also the Chairman of Association of Professional Education Consultants of Pakistan (APECOP), said previously students going for Pre-sessional English language courses or foundation programmes followed by their degrees were given full duration visa. "This is no more available," he added. Students completing their three or six-month English courses, he said, would now be required to reapply for degree
level duration from the UK or outside. To a question, he said all this was being done to bring down the number of international students, especially from South Asia and control illegal immigration.
About the visa processing time, he said the UK student visas were now being processed within two weeks or ten working days which was quickest turn around when comparing with any other country.
Replying to a question about hub and spoke programme, Abidi said: "The hub is now back to Islamabad and all student visa are now being processed at BHC Islamabad."
Too another question about family visa, especially for Pakistani nationals who wish to live permanently or remain in the UK through the family migration route, he said certain changes would come into effect from July 9, including increase in the salary threshold from GBP 18, 000 to GBP 22, 400 per year. He said families joining spouse would now also require proving their English language through tests/ courses, like "Life in the UK".
Talking about student visa by Australia, Abidi said that Australian government had recently announced a new student visa process called Streamline Visa Process (SVP) under which the responsibility had been shifted to universities to assess ability of a student to live and study in Australia.
Replying to another question about average per year cost (including tuition and living cost) in different foreign countries he shared the following information (depending upon courses and universities): for UK 20,000 GBP, for United States $ 30,000, for Australia 25,000 Australian Dollars and 30,000 Canadian Dollars for Canada.
Syed Abidi emphasized the need for delivering in-country degrees by foreign institutions and awarding bodies for those Pakistani students who could not afford to travel abroad, especially under increasing visa restrictions and rising Sterling Pound and US dollar exchange rates in local market.
He also suggested good public and private universities in Pakistan to seek international collaborations and restructure their degrees to incorporate foreign standards and quality and offer dual degrees locally to the students.
Giving examples, he said many good ranking British, Australian and American universities had now established either their own campuses or were offering their degrees in Dubai and Malaysia at a reasonable low cost as compared to the tuition fee and living cost currently applicable for Pakistani students in the UK, the USA or Australia.
Abidi termed courses, such as Foundation in Accountancy (FIA), ACCA and Higher Diploma in Accountancy (HDA) as a route to professional qualifications in Accounting and Financial Management and urged educationists and those connected with academia to adopt and launch other professionally recognized courses in Pakistan which might help middle income community to seek foreign, reputable and recognized qualifications while living in Pakistan.
He especially mentioned Institute of Commercial Management (ICM) and Association of Business Executives (ABE), saying such courses were now available in Pakistan through accredited centers connecting to undergraduate and postgraduate degrees worldwide.
Answering another question on major and niche subject areas having better future opportunities both in Pakistan and outside, the APECOP chairman said one should now go for specialty areas such as Islamic Banking, Risk and Financial Management, Actuarial Sciences, Development Studies, Energy Management, Franchising and Supply Chain Management, etc.
For those interested in science and technology, he said, lots of opportunities existed in telecommunication and mobile engineering, internet security, micro electronics, advance manufacturing systems. In medical and health sciences, he added, students should look at cellular biology, virology, biotechnology and biomedical sciences, etc.
About the Falcon Education and Consultancy Service, Abidi said was the only company in Pakistan which promoted and provided free career counseling for prestigious institutions and did not charge any fee for admission or visa processes for universities and institutions it represented worldwide.
Student Green Card Scheme launched
Lahore: Punjab Chief Minister Mian Shahbaz Sharif on Saturday said that the PML-N always took concrete steps to ensure provision of comfortable, quality and economical traveling facilities to the general public.
He was addressing the launching ceremony of Student Green Card Scheme, held under the auspices of Lahore Transport Company at the Chief Minister's Secretariat here. Advisors Begum Zakiya Shahnawaz, Zaeem Hussain Qadri, Lahore Transport Company chairman Khawaja Ahmad Hasaan, Vice-chairman Mehr Ishtiaq Ahmed, Members Assembly, bus operators, parents, teachers and a large number of students were also present. Addressing the ceremony, Shahbaz Sharif said that public transport system played a crucial role in the progress and prosperity of every society, asserting that the Punjab government had taken revolutionary measures to ensure provision of quality traveling facilities to the citizens by streamlining the public transport system on modern lines. He said the provision of best transport facilities to the citizens was the foremost duty of the state, but, unfortunately, the sector was neglected in the past.
He said the government had introduced Green Card Scheme for the students of provincial metropolis, which would also be expanded to all cities of the province. Shahbaz Sharif said that the initiation of Student Green Card Scheme was a significant step towards ensuring socio-economic justice to the masses. As many as one 1,25,000 girl and boy students would benefit from the new scheme.
16,000 arts teachers to be appointed in Punjab
Rawalpindi: Punjab government is going to announce 16,000 vacancies for arts teachers in the end of August. The authorities have directed the concern departments to complete their homework as soon as possible.
According to the sources, the Punjab chief minister took this step to accommodate the candidates who has their degree in arts subjects, as currently teachers were hired for the science subjects in Punjab schools. "Another reason to announce these vacancies is to promote the importance of arts subjects," they added.
Selection criteria would be BA or MA and posts for the grade of 9, 14 and 16 would be on merit. The high officials have directed the concern department to complete their homework in time. The Punjab government would announce the vacancies in the end of August.
Recently large numbers of science teachers were hired for schools in Punjab but at that time there was no place for the candidates having degrees in arts subjects. This time they would get a chance to get prove their worth.
Lahore: University of Health Sciences (UHS) is organising a seminar on "Implication of Vitamin D for Reproductive Wellbeing" on Thursday.
Noted Pakistani Scientist Professor Dr Lubna Pal will be the guest speaker of the seminar, which is being arranged by UHS Centre for Research in Endocrinology and Reproductive Sciences (CRERS). Prof. Pal is currently working as the Director, Programme for Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome/Reproductive Aging and Bone Health at Yale University, USA.
Regarding the seminar, UHS physiology and cell biology department's head Professor Khalid P. Lone said that low vitamin D levels during pregnancy could affect the wellbeing of the mother as well as the newborn. He said that because a newborn's vitamin D level depended on the mother's vitamin D status, deficiency during pregnancy could lead to rickets (bone softening and weakening) in the child.
Prof. Lone further said that low vitamin D levels during the pregnancy had been associated with an increased risk of numerous complications, including gestational diabetes (high blood sugar during pregnancy), preeclampsia (pregnancy induced high blood pressure) and bacterial vaginosis (an infection caused by an overgrowth of bacteria in genitals). It has also been associated with low infant birth weights and an increased risk of childhood asthma, he added.
Teams for textbooks
Lahore: The Punjab Textbook Board (PTB) has constituted teams for preparation of textbooks for 2013-14 on time and the teams are reviewing the textbooks.
A spokesman for the PTB said that under the Chief Minister's Educational Reforms Programme, steps were being taken for the preparation and availability of free textbooks from class 1 to 10. He added that duties had been assigned to subject specialists who were reviewing the textbooks so that availability of cheap and error-free books could be ensured.
'Daanish Schools set new record of success'
Lahore: The revolutionary project of Daanish Schools initiated by Punjab Chief Minister Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif has set a new record of success in the world. Daanish Schools project, launched only one-and-a-half years ago, has got prominent status in 64 schools selected for all over the world for a renowned Microsoft Company's programme of Microsoft Innovative Pathfinder School for the Year 2013. Microsoft Innovative Pathfinder Schools are providing reliable services at a large scale for the improvement of education in other schools all over the world. Any school becoming part of this system can get all kind of expertise relating to education sector including international educational experts.
The schools affiliated with this system also take joint steps for promotion of the culture of new inventions in the entire world. Microsoft Company invited applications from all over the world for selection of FY-2013 Pathfinder and Mentors School a few days ago.
As many as 64 schools were selected for FY Pathfinder Schools on the basis of performance including Daanish School Chishtian for Boys from Pakistan out of lakhs of applications received from all over the world.
Chief Executive of Daanish Schools Authority Yousaf Kamal disclosed that Microsoft Company was taking students of Computer Section of Daanish School for Boys Chishtian on a study tour to Morocco who had taken part in the competition.
He said that Daanish Schools reflected the Chief Minister Punjab Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif's vision "education for all" and best results can be achieved if talented children of less privileged segment of the society are encouraged.
'Youth festival from Sept'
Lahore: Punjab Assembly Deputy Speaker Rana Mashhood has said that the world's biggest National Youth Sports Festival will commence in Lahore from September 2012 in which sportsmen belonging to 22 countries of the world will participate.
Addressing a press conference, Mashhood said that in accordance with the vision of the CM, the festival would display original cultural colour of Punjab and Pakistan whereas Pakistani sportsmen living in streets and Mohallahs would be introduced at the international level. Mashhood said the Punjab Youth Festival, conducted two months ago on the directive of CM Shahbaz Sharif, was appreciated the world over and now many other countries were also planning to hold such youth festivals in their own countries. He said this international festival of sports had strictly been kept away from any kind of political interference or monopoly of few persons.
Pak position holders in Scotland
Lahore: Pakistani position-holder boy and girl students who are visiting Europe as part of the Punjab chief minister's initiative have reached Scotland where they visited University of Glasgow and University of Strathclyde.
The students were given a warm welcome by the administration when they reached University of Glasgow and senior professors informed them about the subjects taught at the university as well the teaching methods. In the second phase of their visit the students went to University of Strathclyde. The in charge of international office welcomed the students and informed them about university. The news