NWFP schools monitering mechanism

Proposal for improving monitoring of schools
Peshawar, March 06: A proposal for improving monitoring of over Rs30 billion, the Frontier government annually spends on education sector, is yet to take off because of the Finance Department's inability to ensure availability of resources for the initiative.

The NWFP Elementary and Education Department last year had floated a proposal for putting in place a mechanism to monitor quality of education being imparted in the public sector, however, it is stuck with the Finance Department, which has regretted to allocate fund for it, an official said.

The provincial government annually spends around Rs30 billion on running of over 27,000 schools, which impart education from primary to higher secondary. However, there was no proper mechanism to monitor utilisation of funds and output being made through such spending.

Official explained that the education department's proposal envisaged creation of 700 posts of assistant district officer (education) in addition to the current 300 posts besides providing them transport facilities so that they could conduct inspection in schools on regular basis. As per the estimates worked out last year, the provincial government required to make one time allocation of Rs200 million for bearing the cost of vehicles and other essential equipment, to be used in the monitoring process.

After that the government would need annually Rs50 million as operational cost of the system, which would be monitoring overall spending in the education sector that comes to almost 40 per cent of the NWFP budget, the official said.

For the last one year, the proposal is laying with the Finance Department, which is finding it difficult to arrange one time allocation of Rs200 million. Total sanctioned strength of the provincial government is around 300,000 out of which almost 58 per cent posts are in education sector, which doesn't have any systematic mechanism to monitor their performance, the official added.

At present, the education department has a circle system to monitor 27,000 schools by appointing one grade-16 official as ADO (education) giving him the task to conduct inspections of 100 schools locating in one circle. These circle in-charges, who reports to their respective district education officers (education), are neither given transport facility nor any allowance to cover their cost of travelling, the official added, "this virtually confines them to the offices."

The official said that in Punjab, the government had been following similar mechanism to monitor performance of public sector schools, as ADOs had been recruited for the purpose of monitoring. They had been provided with motorbikes and were required to conduct inspections on daily basis. "You see disciplinary actions are taken there on daily basis against teachers for poor results and being absent from duty and this is because of the system," explained an official.

In the NWFP, the military-run government in 2000 had introduced a system of punishment and reward for teachers, as a result each school used to be monitored and accordingly it would reflect on their annual confidential reports.

This somehow had improved performance of many public sector schools. However, after the elected government came in, this system was not carried forward, leaving over 3.7 million students at the mercy of their teachers, the official said. Dawn

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AIOU extends Matric, FA, BA admission date
Islamabad: Allama Iqbal Open University (AIOU) has extended the last date for submission of admission forms upto March 20.

AIOU Director Admissions Sohail Nazir Rana said that all the continuing and fresh students who have not yet applied for admission but are desirous of getting admission are informed to get the admission form from the main campus of the University. The students can also get admission forms at regional offices located in 36 regional campuses around the country and submit up to March 20 along with prescribed fee. For continuing students, the university had already dispatched continuing computerized admission forms to their given addresses. If anyone has not yet received the continuing admission form, he/she is advised to download it from the AIOU's website www.aiou.edu.pk.

Fresh Matric/FA/BA admission form can be taken from the main campus of the university or its regional offices and deposit the prescribed fee alongwith the admission form in the authorized branches of National Bank of Pakistan and all branches of First Women Bank Limited, Allied Bank Limited, Bank Alfalah Limited and Habib Bank Limited throughout the country by March 20. Admission fee in shape of bank draft is not acceptable while admission forms from Matric to Ph.D will not be acceptable after due date in any case. The news

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Heads of schools, colleges barred from meeting politicians
Islamabad: Federal Directorate of Education has barred the heads of schools and colleges from proceeding to political personalities to get resolved the various issues pertaining to their educational institutions.

It has been learnt that the representatives of a principals' body had gone to meet Advisor to PM on Education Sardar Aseff Ahmed Ali to apprise him about their issues but he declined to meet him and instead letters were delivered to the heads of all the schools and colleges for observing new instructions.

The letter says, "It has been observed with grave concern that a number of teaching and non-teaching staff serving in Federal Government Educational Institutions (FGEIs)/Islamabad Model Colleges (IMCs) are using political influence by approaching higher authorities directly in contradiction to set official procedure.

According to Government Servants (Conduct) Rules, 1964, no government servant shall, directly or indirectly, approach any member of the National Assembly or a Provincial Assembly or any other non-official person to intervene on his behalf in any matter".

The letter has also warned with severe action for contravening the rules saying, "The competent authority has taken a serious notice of such practice and has directed that henceforth all officers/officers (indulging in such practice) be dealt with strictly and action be taken against them under rules".

The representatives of the schools and colleges informed that they had tried earlier twice to meet the Adviser but in vain and they have been issued letters for not following proper procedure and bypassing the Director General of FDE.

Its pertinent to mention here that the principals of schools and colleges are perturbed over the frequent changes of DGs at FDE.

They have been demanding the appointment of permanent DG, removal of four 18-grade directors from FDE, introduction of new service structure, provision of funds for hiring accommodation and provision of facilities and grades to the FG teachers on the pattern of Model Colleges' staff.

The employees of schools and colleges have also announced a protest movement and boycott of annual exams if their demands are not met within 15 days.

The Chairperson of Federal Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education (FBISE) and Acting Director General of FDE when contacted said, "The ministry has issued this letter and rules and regulations should be followed by all the officials. Even I cannot meet the minister without the consent of secretary." The nation

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Rawalpindi: All preparations have been finalised for Rawalpindi Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education (RBISE) Secondary School Certificate (SSC) annual examination commencing from March 13. According to details, 353 examination centres have been set up for overall 1,25,000 candidates. Daily times

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HEC courses draft
Islamabad: The National Curriculum Revision Committee (NCRC) in a meeting held on Friday, completed the draft of the courses for B.Sc (Hons), MSc (Hons) and Ph.D in Water Management.

The committee meeting held at HEC regional centre, Karachi and highlighted that the students, after completion of Water Management degree, will be able to implement and operate appropriate and sustainable solutions to irrigation and agricultural water management, said a news release issued here.

They will better assess water needs and plan for sustainable and efficient use of water resources, design and manage appropriate and effective pump, conveyance and application systems and integrate academic studies with the professional practice.

Dr. Altaf Ali G. Shaikh, member (Academics) HEC, as chief guest briefed the members about obligation of the commission for revision and development of curricula at undergraduate and postgraduate levels. He said that HEC is striving to make the curriculum compatible with international standards, job-orientated and matching the needs of the society.

He appreciated the comments received from international reviewers, Dr. Masoud Edraki, senior lecturer, Surface Hydrology and Dr. Muhammad Nadeem Asghar, senior lecturer, Environmental Hydrology Charles Sturt University, Australia on the draft curriculum in Water Management.

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Prize distribution ceremony
Islamabad: Outstanding students of Beaconhouse School System were awarded at the annual prize distribution ceremony held here on Friday.

Renowned journalist Hamid Mir was the chief guest. IGP Islamabad Syed Kaleem Imam was also present in the ceremony. Beaconhouse Margallah Campus Boys Branch won the prizes, which is the largest campus in the system with nearly 1250 students on roll. Twenty-three students achieved Straight As in 2009 and 66% of students achieved 3As and above.

A slide show of the students was shown to the jam-packed crowd in auditorium consisting of parents, students and guests. The students were clicked in various moods having fun and studying. The gold medals were awarded to the students achieving eight and more than 8As. Silver medals were given to the students achieving 7As and bronze medals were awarded to the students achieving 5As.

Urdu and English dramas were also presented. English drama '5 ways to kill a man' were scripted and directed by Hamida Mirza and Tazmeen Fatima. The Urdu play 'Umeed-e-Sahar' was much appreciated by the audience, as it was a true reflection of the current situation in the country. Due to the students' intense acting and its emotional content, some parents were also seen wiping their tears during the drama. The drama has shown various aspects of problems prevailing in our society i.e. extremism.

The students used the help audio visual screen in their drama for background and the combination of real characters with the changing backdrop of computer fascinated the audience and was indeed a unique venture. Urdu drama was scripted and directed by Surrayya Malik.

The choir also presented few songs and the students of VI, VII, VIII, IX and X were awarded with honour certificates. Hamid Mir appreciated the slideshow and the Urdu Drama. He congratulated the winners and thanked Principal Margalla Campus Admiral (r) Nashat Raffi for inviting him.

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Froebel's sports day
Rawalpindi: Excited students, pleased parents and happy teachers filled the stands to cheer young participants as students of Primary Years at the Rawalpindi campus branch of Froebel's International School celebrated their annual Sports Day here on Friday.

Acclaimed cricketer of his time, Majid Khan, was the chief guest at the event. The activities started with a parade by students clad in colourful costumes. Each class had its own colour codes and the respective teachers were wearing dresses of the same colour to give the event a coordinated look. This was followed by recitation of a 'surah' from the Quran and administration of oath. A grand Olympic torch was then lit up and remained aflame till the end.

Brightly coloured balloons were released in the cool March breeze along with a huge flock of pigeons. The audience was extremely energised and the participants were ready to set the ground on fire with splendid stunts, awesome kicks, wonderful races, and tremendous Taekwondo moves which displayed flexible and first-class routines by the kids. Among the highly welcomed routines were the Stick Break and Marble Slab Break.

This was followed by aerobics by students of grades 1, 2 and 3. The students performed magnificently to the beat of the popular song, 'Stand up for the Champions'.

Then began the races. First came the first graders who were excited to be part of such a colourful day. Parents particularly enjoyed the Hat and Headband race. The second graders participated in the Pick up Ball Race, Pop the Balloon Race and Daddy's Coat Race. Then it was time for the third graders to display their skills to the excited audience. They sped up to win positions in the Three Legged Race.

All guests including the chief guest praised the energetic aerobic display on Michael Jackson most popular song 'They don't care about us.' The display was followed by an amazing Slalom Race by students of grades IV and V.

Majid Khan honoured the prize distribution and applauded the children and the school for putting together a brilliant event filled with colours and energy. The news

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