Education not given priority in budget: experts
Lahore, June 23: Education should be the top priority of the nation, which should be duly reflected in the allocation of resources to the educational sector on a par with international standards. These views were expressed by the speakers at a roundtable on 'Profile of Budget Education for 2009-10' held in Lahore under the auspices of Pakistan Institute of National Affairs (PINA).
The speakers said that the federal and provincial budgets 2009-10 had not shown right approach towards education. They said that it was high time that the legislators recognised the pivotal role of the teachers in the education system and they should be provided with a congenial environment for high quality teaching in terms of bringing an end to contract system once and for all, ensuring faster track of promotion on seniority-cum-efficiency basis and modelling their service structure in line with the civil services.
Mian Muhammad Akram, a professor of Economics, highlighted the challenges faced by the education sector. He said the major challenges were inadequacy of funding for research, training facilities for teachers and educational managers, scholarship grants for deserving students, development packages for teachers and the provision of basic facilities at institutional level such as classroom, electricity, toilet, school boundary walls and clean drinking water.
Professor Mumtaz Akhtar, director of IER, Punjab University, argued for a uniform system of education according to the national aspirations. She said, "We could achieve high academic standards by investing in teacher education, especially at the college level."
University of Management and Technology Rector Dr Hassan Suhaib Murad called upon the legislators and the educationists to come up with visionary initiative for streamlining the educational system within the framework of the constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan.
Altaf Hasan Qureshi, secretary general of PINA, observed that due to faulty vision of decision makers Pakistan's educational system had tilted towards market-oriented disciplines. He appreciated the zeal of Chief Minister Mian Shahbaz Sharif for talent promotion and hoped that concrete steps would be taken to promote quality education in public educational institutions and motivate the teachers to present themselves as role models.
Ashraf Sohna, Punjab labour minister, said that in the present turbulent situation, the nation was looking forward to a soft revolution which could be ensured only through education. Primary education, in particular, should be given focal importance, he said.
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Rs 2,000 monthly stipend for displaced students
Lahore: Chief Minister Mian Shahbaz Sharif has approved a one-year assistance programme for the students among the internally displaced persons from the Malakand division under which each student will be given a monthly stipend of Rs2,000 for meeting his expenses while studying at educational and vocational institutions in the province.
According to a DGPR handout on Monday, approving the recommendations of the committee, set up under chairmanship of Punjab Minister for Education Mujtaba Shujaur Rehman, the chief minister directed the officials concerned to extend the programme to the students of commerce colleges and vocational training centres being run by the Technical Education and Vocational Training Authority.
The committee also reviewed the arrangements made with regard to scholarships and criteria for the displaced students. In the light of the recommendations of the committee, financial assistance would not be linked with any scholarship programme but would be provided to all the students coming from the displaced families of Malakand division presently studying in educational institutions in Punjab as their families might not be able to pay their fee and other expenses.
Similar instructions regarding hundred percent fee remissions had been sent to the government educational institutions and other institutes like the Sadiq Public School, Bahawalpur. The assistance programme of the Punjab government will be for one year for the displaced students and it will be withdrawn on the return of the IDPs to their areas.
The Punjab Education Endowment Fund would scrutinise all the applications to be received under the programme and take necessary action accordingly. Meanwhile, the Punjab government will also approach private educational institutions like LUMS and the LSE to announce 100 percent fee remission for these students.Your Comments
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Khyber Medical University (KMU) adopts standard examination method
Peshawar: To ensure uniformity in the evaluation and assessment process, Khyber Medical University (KMU) has adopted a standard method of examination in all the medical and dental institutions in the provinces, said Vice-Chancellor Professor Dr Hafizullah.
Speaking at the concluding session of a two-day workshop organised by KMU on Multiple Choice Questions (MCQs) and Short Easy Questions (SEQs), which concluded here Monday, Dr Hafizullah said the MCQs and SEQs method of examination was in vogue across the world, which was the best way of examining students.
Associate Professor Dr Sahibzada Mehmood Noor was the facilitator of the workshop. He made detailed presentations on characteristics of good examination, types of assessment tools, types of MCQs and extended matching questions, critique of short easy question papers, development of short easy questions and scoring strategy.
The facilitator said the aim of the workshop was to sensitise and keep on board the relevant faculty members of the KMU-affiliated medical and dental colleges and to enable them write the best MCQs and short easy questions. The News
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IUB to build five faculties
Bahawalpur: New buildings costing Rs1.4 billion of five faculties of the Islamia University Bahawalpur will be built on Baghdadul Jadid campus in the next financial year, says a press release.
Vice-Chancellor Prof Dr Belal A Khan says the buildings will be of commerce, management sciences, the college of fine arts and designs, the college of agriculture environmental sciences and the college of vet and animal sciences.
He said 175 acres were available for the buildings. He also ordered the completion of furnishing of the auditorium at the cost of Rs50 million.
DURRANI: Senator Muhammad Ali Durrani has demanded implementation of the late Zulfikar Ali Bhutto's announcement regarding allotment of a 12 ½ per cent CSS quota to the Bahawalpur division.
Addressing a public meeting, Mr Durrani raised the demand which he had never bothered to highlight during his PML-Q's rule.
The late Bhutto during his whirlwind tours as president and prime minister of various cities of the Bahawalpur division had announced several concessions for the division.
Mr Durrani said Bahawalpur had been the most neglected and backward area in the country for decades as the successive governments overlooked its genuine rights.
He admitted that he had committed many mistakes during his rule and that after leaving Islamabad he would try for the restoration of Bahawalpur province.
He also said the Indus River Water Treaty had deprived the Bahawalpur area of the water of the river Sutlej. Dawn
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Lahore: The Zoology Department of Government College University (GCU) and University of Aberdeen, UK, organised a seminar on "Fish and cc of Pakistan". According to a press statement issued on Monday, chief guest of the ceremony, noted ichthyologist Dr M Ramzan Mirza, said fishery industry was a growing industry and there was a need to promote it for the progress of economic sector. He said that without proper research on fisheries it was impossible to maintain required standard of the fishery industry. He said the fish health management was a big issue and it was difficult to control fish health in a poor environmental condition. The News
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