Attendance records of colleges to be monitored

KARACHI, Sept 24, 2007: The provincial college education department has plans to monitor all the 239 colleges across Sindh to improve students' attendance and also the overall examination results. According to officials, Sindh will be divided into five zones where regional directors, along with other senior officials of the education department, will monitor colleges in their jurisdiction on a random basis to check attendance registers.

I will also be part of the same set-up and will visit the entire province, with emphasis on Karachi, as we are headquartered here, Dr Rafique Ahmed Siddiqui, Director-General Colleges (Sindh) said.

According to the plan, it would be a part of the job of all senior officials to dedicate at least a couple of hours or more to visiting various colleges in their jurisdiction and checking their overall performance with particular emphasis on the students'attendance and records of the teachers taking classes. Every teacher would be bound to maintain a lesson diary in which he would put all the details of lectures and which subject or portion of it he taught to the pupils.

The attendance registers, Dr Siddiqui said, would also show the time every student arrived in class, which would make it easier for the teams to reprimand habitual late-comers and get their behaviour corrected through various measures to improve their interest in academic activities.

We'll also inform the parents of students who don't turn up to classes and who turn up late, he said.

In the letters to the parents, the department would also warn of action as severe as expulsion of a student guilty of absenteeism.

Besides, officials said action against teachers who showed little interest in their classes and concentrate more on running paid tuition classes would also be taken. The department was contemplating ways and means to punish the tuition mafia.

Several higher secondary schools, which also impart education up to the intermediate level, do not fall within the limits of the college education department as they are controlled by the respective district governments. However, to improve the situation there, Dr Siddiqui said, he would also suggest similar actions to the district governments.

Most higher secondary schools (31) are in Karachi and their performance has been a big question mark for decades since they were elevated to impart intermediate education. Dawn

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