Teachers' boycott of primary exam

LAHORE, May 25(Daily Times): Special Secretary (schools) Capt (r) Zahid Saeed said on Thursday that strict disciplinary action would be taken against the teachers who tried to disturb the primary (Class 5) examinations starting from Friday (today).

He said all EDOs had been asked to ensure alternative staff to conduct exams in case the teachers' associated with various teaching associations tried to boycott the exam, adding that he had also asked DCOs to cooperate in the conduction of the exam. He said extra time would be given to the candidates in case the exam did not start in time because of the "feared boycott".

Saeed said the government was trying to resolve the teachers' problems, adding that the government had formed a committee, headed by the finance secretary, to redress the teachers' grievances on priority basis. He said the committee would review the teachers associations' demands and negotiate with them. He said that almost 1.2 million candidates across the province would appear in the examination.

The Muttahida Mahaz Asataza (MMA) has already formed committees to ensure complete boycott of the primary exams as part of the teachers' protests against the government over several issues, including the government's delay in issuing the teachers in Punjab the special Teaching Allowance and denationalisation of a large number of educational institutions in Punjab.

MMA Lahore Chapter chairman Allah Dad Malik said on Thursday that all the arrangements for the exam boycott had been completed, adding that special mobile squads had also been constituted in all districts of the province to ensure complete boycott of the exam. He said teachers would reach exam centres before the papers started, adding, "I appeal to all parents not to send their children for the exam on Friday because there would be no exam". He said any teacher showing sincerity with the government in the conduction of the exam "would be dealt with".

According to the Punjab Examination Commission date sheet, the English Language exam would be held on the first day of the examination on Friday (today). The examination of two subjects - Science and Islamiat (Ethics for Non-Muslim students) - would be held on the second day of exam (May 26) and the Mathematics exam would be held on May 28. The examinations of Social Science and Urdu would be held on the last day of the exams, May 29.

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