IBCC Conversion formula for O & A level revised

IBCC agrees on formula for A and O level marking
Karachi, March 03: The 131st conference of the Inter-Board Committee of Chairmen (IBCC) on Wednesday revised the conversion formula for the General Certificate of Education (GCE) O and A Level with effect from academic year 2010, besides agreeing in principal to give two more chances or a year to unsuccessful students at the Higher Secondary School Certificate (HSC) and Secondary School Certificate (SSC) level to clear their failed papers.

The IBCC - a body of the federal ministry of education whose certificates are binding and applicable across the country - in its two-day moot, which concluded on Wednesday, also deliberated upon the Pakistan Medical and Dental Council's (PMDC) eligibility criteria of admission to medical institutions for overseas students particularly with reference to the 45 students who had been admitted to a medical university of Sindh after passing the A Level examination with mathematics, biology and chemistry in violation of the criteria set by the federal ministry of education under its scheme of studies.

The IBCC moot was presided over by its chairman Prof Anwar Ahmed Zai and attended by its secretary, Ramzan Achakzai, the chairmen of all educational boards, including technical and textbook boards of the country, representatives of the federal ministry of education, the Bureau of Curriculum and the controller of examinations of Allama Iqbal Open University and Gilgit University.

Briefing newsmen about the outcome of the meeting, the IBCC chairman said that though the IBCC decided to revise the conversion formula for the GCE 'O' and 'A' level with effect from 2010, it did not agree to use the Percentage Uniform Marks (PUM) by the Cambridge International Examination (CIE) for equivalence as this will be disadvantage to the lower limits of the A and E grades.

Under the revised conversion formula for the GCE O and A level, he said that after the introduction of an A* for O and A level by the CIE & Edexcel, the CIE Letter grade A*, A, B, C, D and E would be equated to the IBCC equivalent marks of 90, 85, 75, 65, 55 and 45, respectively, as against the IBCC's existing equivalent marks of 90, 80, 70, 60, 50 and 40, respectively.

In this regard, the IBCC pointed out that the CIE would be asked to communicate raw marks in each case concerning the grades awarded to candidates, be rational in awarding grades in relation to their raw marks and stick to the number as agreed to awarding A* to candidates.

Moreover, Edexcel will also introduce A-1/A* grade for O/A levels in 2010 and the IBCC on its part was to ensure that the overall number of candidates receiving these higher grades remains proportionate.

Scheme of studies
Without mentioning the name of a medical university of Karachi which had given admission to some 45 students who had passed their A Level with mathematics, chemistry and biology, the IBCC chief said that the meeting while expressing inability to issue them equivalence certificate for their A level qualification was of the view that they were admitted to the medical university in violation of the federal education ministry's scheme of studies which inter alia states that "only those who will pass their Intermediate or A level examination with physics, biology and chemistry are eligible to get admission to a medial college or university of the country".

The IBCC forum, he added, noted that the PMDC or any allied medical college/university shall not determine the equivalence criteria for HSC level in the presence of the IBCC which is authorised by the government of Pakistan. Therefore, the IBCC agreed to impress upon all concerned (federal ministry of education, federal ministry of health, Higher Education Commission, PMDC and chancellor of public sector universities of Sindh) to ensure that such an encroachment by the PMDC, etc, should be discouraged as it was allowing overseas students to get admission in medical institutions of the country without passing the subject of Physics, he added.

The IBCC also expressed its concern that if it issued equivalence certificates to the A level students, it would open a Pandora's Box as local students who had passed intermediate exams with mathematics, biology and chemistry would also seek similar concessions.

Library Day
The IBCC forum in the light of the Board of Intermediate Education recent successful experience of getting celebrated the Library Day in its affiliated colleges resolved that all other educational board of the country would be asked to ensure that the colleges affiliated to them also observe the Library Day on Feb 21 each year as such an event would help increase the habit of reading among students.

The IBCC also resolved that the territorial jurisdiction of the respective examining boards should be respected and the Federal Board and other should secure a no-objection certificate from the board concerned prior to affiliating any institution with it as the territorial jurisdiction had also been defined and given in the ordinances of the respective boards.

It also agreed in principle to consider the proposal of according an additional chance or a year to the unsuccessful students at the HSC and SSC level to clear their failed papers in seven attempts, including annual and supplementary examinations as compared to five attempts.

Board of Secondary Education Karachi chairman Anzar Hussain Zaidi and the IBCC Secretary Ramzan Achakzai were also present. Dawn

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Grading system for BS students at Karachi University
Karachi: The Registrar, University of Karachi (KU), has announced that at a meeting of the Deans of the faculties, it has been decided that the B.S. students of Batch 2007, admitted in 2006, will be assessed according to examination and assessment rules, 2002, Booklet (Page 6-7).

The overall grading for declaration of final results of Division System for the students of 2006-7 batch would be according to the following criteria: first division, 60 percent and above; second division, 45 percent and less than 60 percent; less than 45 percent would lead to the failure in the aggregate.

Over all grading for declaration of final results of students admitted in 2007-8 batches would be according to the Grading System approved for B.S. 2008 Batch. The news

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Syndicate membership valid: registrar KU teachers launch protest drive
Karachi: Karachi University teachers wearing black armbands will participate in the voting of the academic council elections being held on the campus on Thursday.

The Karachi University Teachers Society (Kuts) announced on Wednesday that a protest campaign was being launched against the university administration over what they termed the last two 'controversial' syndicate meetings.

The vice chancellor failed to honour his promise of declaring the two meetings null and void, teachers said.

In recent days, Kuts representatives held meetings with the vice chancellor and apprised him of their concerns relating to the last two syndicate meetings.

The meetings, they argued, had no legal status as six members with expired memberships had participated in the meeting. They alleged that the two decisions taken in the meeting were against the university code.

Kuts president Dr Abid Hasnain accused the vice chancellor of becoming 'hostage' to a few individuals and taking decisions according to their wishes. "The vice chancellor had earlier promised the society representatives that the decisions would be withdrawn and reviewed in the next syndicate meeting. But now he has a different opinion," he said.

Dr Hasnain also sought the resignation of the registrar, saying that he had failed to ensure the sanctity of the university code on the statute bodies.

"The registrar is not a member of the syndicate. He is the custodian of the KU code. But the present registrar has failed to perform his prime responsibilities," he said.

He said the protest drive would be launched on Thursday and the agitation would gradually be taken to a higher level, if the teachers' demands were remained unmet. He said a letter highlighting the society's concerns had been written to the chancellor, with a request for a meeting with the teachers' representatives.

Registrar's version
The KU registrar, meanwhile, issued a clarification in response to media reports on a Kuts protest. According to the press release, the actual position (on the matter) is contrary to what is being projected in some newspapers.

"It has always been a practice that the membership tenure begins with the first meeting of the syndicate body as per the university code. According to this, the membership of the syndicate's members is valid till March 28. A letter in this regard has been sent to the governor Sindh/chancellor for further guidance in the matter." Dawn

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Women's Day celebration at KU
Karachi: In order to celebrate the Women's Day, University of Karachi (KU) is organising a seminar titled 'The Young Working Children of Karachi: An Analysis' on March 8 from 10:30am to 4:30pm at the Arts Auditorium. The event is organised under the supervision of Prof Dr Nasreen Aslam Shah, Director, Centre of Excellence for Women's Studies, in collaboration with the Department of Social Work, KU, HEC, Women Development Department, Social Welfare Department, Government of Sindh and Anjuman Taraqqi-e-Niswan. Ex-City Nazim Syed Mustufa Kamal will be the chief guest whereas Sindh Social Welfare Minister Nargis ND Khan will be the guest of honour. ppi

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Missionary schools, colleges closed
Karachi: All missionary educational institutions in the city will remain closed for three days, starting from Thursday, in protest against the assassination of Federal Minister for Minorities Affairs Shahbaz Bhatti in Islamabad on Wednesday.

According to the principal of the St Joseph's College, Dr Dean, the decision to keep all missionary schools of the city closed for three days has been taken by the Catholic Board of Education to mourn the death of the minister in the terrorist attack.

Around 45 schools are run under the aegis of the Catholic Board of Education.

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Varsity employees refuse to call off strike
Hyderabad: Employees of the public sector universities of Sindh in Jamshoro, Tandojam, Khairpur and Nawabshah continued their strike and resorted to lock-out on the second consecutive day on Wednesday.

No point bus was allowed to leave the university campus at Jamshoro. The administration of Sindh University hired private buses, but the protesting employees stopped them on the Super Highway.

In view of the prevailing situation, drivers of Sindh, Mehran and Liaquat Medical universities refused to operate buses.

Reports said that at the LUMHS campus, police resorted to baton charge to disperse the protesting employees and also took into custody more than 12 employees

Leaders of the employees Mohammad Ali Ghanghro of Sindh University, Nazeer Qureshi of LUMHS and Ghulam Mustafa Khokhar of Mehran University have made it clear that the protest would not be called off unless their problems were resolved.

Employees of Sindh Agriculture University of Tandojam also observed a strike and locked up the offices.

Meanwhile, the Shagird Action Committee of Sindh Agriculture University has threatened to stage a long march up to Hyderabad on Monday if the academic activities are not resumed and the point buses were not run.

KHAIRPUR: Shah Abdul Latif University Employees Welfare Association (SALUEWA) locked the offices to protest against inattentive behaviour of the administration regarding their demands.

Later, they staged a sit-in outside the science faculty building. The Model School of SALU also remained closed.

Students could not reach university because point-buses did not ply on the routes due to the protest whereas the hostellers left for homes.

President of SALUEWA Sheharyar Rajput, general secretary Mohammad Aslam Ghumro, Ali Gohar Narejo, Bagh Ali Jalbani and Aslam Baloch said in their speeches that vice-chancellors had powers to resolve their problems, but they were neglecting workers.

They alleged that the Sindh governor, who is also chancellor of the universities, had no interest in any of the universities of Sindh and his practices showed that he was the governor of Karachi only. They appealed to the saner elements of Sindh to raise their voice and support university employees in their struggle.

Some officers of SALU, Khairpur, met the protesting employees, who were briefed by leaders of employees.

The employees complained that after lapse of 35 days, the officers concerned did not give any response to their protest.

Members of the Welfare Association of Quaid-e-Awam University of Engineering, Science and Technology of Nawabshah continued their boycott of duties and held a demonstration.

Carrying placards, they were chanting slogans for acceptance of their demands.

Protesters, led by president of the association Pir Bux Keerio, said that they had been demanding removal of retired staff, a residential colony for lower staff and some financial incentives. Dawn

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Mardan college blast suspects held
Mardan: Deputy Inspector General (DIG) of Police Abdullah Khan said on Wednesday that several suspects had been arrested in a search operation in the areas near the Government Girls Degree College, Lundkhwar where Tuesday's grenade attack injured scores of girl students.

Talking to media here, the DIG said 35 students were injured in the attack and 17 of them were shifted to the Mardan Medical Complex, 16 were brought to the District Headquarters Hospital, Mardan and a student and a passer-by were referred to Peshawar.

Abdullah Khan said 12 students had been discharged from the Mardan Medical Complex and 11 from DHQ Hospital, Mardan after administering them first aid. Local police registered a case against unknown accused on the complaint of Ms Nasreen, the vice-principal of the college.

Meanwhile, the college administration closed the institution till an indefinite period. The local people will stage protest today (Thursday) against the attack. The attack had caused outrage in the area as attacking women was termed against both Islamic and Pakhtun traditions.

Earlier, Inspector General of Police Fiaz Toru visited the college in Lundkhwar and went to the hospitals in Mardan to inquire about the students injured in the attack.

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Free uniform for students from next year: minister
Peshawar: Provincial Minister for Elementary and Secondary Education, Sardar Hussain Babak on Wednesday said that the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government would provide free uniform to the students of public sector schools from the coming academic year.

He was presiding over a meeting of the newly appointed executive district officers (education) under the management cadre in the province. "The provision of free uniform will benefit 4.5 million students studying in the government schools," he said.

Around 1897 schools were damaged due to militancy and recent devastating floods, he said, adding that reconstruction of these schools was underway. The minister claimed that despite several problems enrolment in the government schools had increased. To introduce administrative reforms in the Education Department, he said the government separated the management and teaching cadres.

"Of 1,600 closed schools, now only 200 are shut and the rest have been made functional for which the Education Department has made tremendous efforts," he said.

He said that with the empowerment of the executive district officers regarding posting and transfer of teachers, political interference in the education department would be stopped. He said that if the bureaucrats didn't enrol their children in the government schools, then they have no right to intervene in the affairs of the schools. The news

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