HEC brings curtain down on foreign faculty programme
Islamabad, June 23: The Pakistan Higher Commission (HEC) could only receive Rs25 million against the allocated amount of Rs12 billion for 2011-12 from the Finance Division forcing it to abandon its foreign faculty programme.
Besides, the financial crunch will also affect more than 6,000 local and foreign scholarships of the HEC as the commission will not be able to pay their tuition fee and other necessary expenditures which is the responsibility of the government as per deed of agreement singed with these scholars.
As per decision of the Council of Common Interest (CCI), the federal government is responsible for extending the financial support to higher education sector till next NFC award to be announced in 2014, sources said.
An officer of the HEC said the withholding of the funds would lead to a total collapse of higher education sector.
There are 95,000 faculty members and support staff all over the country whose salaries and allowances have not been paid for the last two months.
As many as 500,000 students have been studying in those institutions. The estimated deficit in current fiscal year is Rs6 billion and Rs8.84 billion in next fiscal year, he said.
"Because of lack of funds, new enrollment, faculty hiring and other new initiatives will not be taken. Besides, 152 ongoing development projects in the current financial year have been affected. In the next financial year the federal government has decided to release only Rs28 million against the HEC demand of Rs38 billion," he said.
The official said the salaries of about 120 foreign professors, who have been hired by different universities under foreign faculty programme, had been put on hold for want of funds.
"They have not been paid the salaries for April and May 2012. Since we do not have funds, the programme is being abandoned and termination letters to the faculty members are being sent," he said.
The Vice Chancellors' Committee Chairperson, Engr Imtiaz Hussain Gilani said that VCs had already shown dissatisfaction over withholding of funds.
"Vice-chancellors had hoped that the education friendly democratic government will address the financial crisis by taking corrective measures and honour their commitments to the education sector, but the current decision has dashed their hopes," he said.
The HEC adviser, Dr Riaz Qureshi, confirmed that the HEC had decided to abandon the foreign faculty programme because of lack of funds. He, however, hoped that the things might change in the future. Dawn
MPhil student commits suicide
Islamabad: A student of MPhil committed suicide by hanging himself from a ceiling fan on Friday.
Police said that Basharat Khan, 29, son of Meraj Gul, was a resident of Mardan and a student of MPhil final year at the Air University. He committed suicide by hanging himself from a ceiling fan of his room in a boys' hostel in G10/1.
Initial investigation suggested that the deceased was not happy, and hopeless about his future, police said.
Police have registered a case and are investigating on the other angles of the incident. The body was shifted to PIMS Hospital for an autopsy.
951 teachers to be inducted in Pindi schools
Rawalpindi: The Punjab government has given approval to the recruitment of 951 new teachers for all public schools across Rawalpindi, while the selections of educators would be completed during the summer vacations. The government has also released budget for their salaries. Executive District Officer (Education) Qazi Zahoorur Haq has said that computer knowledge is essential for the selection of new teachers. online
3 million kids out of school in KP
Peshawar: The participants of a consultation on Friday said three million children, including two million girls, weren't attending school in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
They said only half of children go to primary schools in the province and half of the school-going kids drop out later. The event was hosted by the British High Commissioner Adam Thomson in Islamabad, a press release said.
The participants, including representatives from political parties, were briefed on the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Education Reform Roadmap by Sir Michael Barber, an education expert, and the UK Department for International Development (DFID)'s special representative for education in Pakistan.
The Roadmap, a partnership between the DFID and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government, aims to ensure children's enrolment at schools in the province and their quality education.Speaking at the cross-party briefing, Adam Thomson said: "Despite all the challenges it faces and the sacrifices it has to render, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has good foundations to build on and has proved an excellent partner."
He urged the participants to do what they could to make universal primary education a reality in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and support the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Education Reform Roadmap.
Recently, DFID's Michael Barber met Chief Minister Ameer Haider Hoti in Peshawar to review progress on the Education Reform Roadmap. He said a new technical team comprising nine members had been formed to work with the provincial government to achieve the goal of getting every out-of-school child in the province into school, learning more, and staying in school for longer.
In April this year, the UK announced a new package of education support for Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, which by 2015 will get more than 800,000 girls and boys into schools, build more than 2,000 new classrooms and provide critical infrastructure such as drinking water, toilets, and boundary walls for girls' schools, as well as ensuring that a teacher turns up for every lesson with a clear learning plan. The news