English medium government schools

Government schools to go English medium
Lahore, Feb 11: The Punjab School Education Department has notified the conversion of all its schools from the Urdu medium to English medium from the next academic year, says a handout issued here on Wednesday.

The government decision aims at competing with the globalized word in the field of knowledge.

The department spokesman said teachers protest against the decision was not justified, and they must appreciate the government efforts to enhance their knowledge through capacity-building programme.

With a view to enabling the teachers to teach English medium books, all the headmasters/ headmistresses and senior teachers have been designated "Master Trainers". The teachers have already undergone six-day training course in spoken English, he added. The rest of the teachers would undergo spoken English 12-day course.

He said the government of Pakistan had approved in the curriculum-2006 that mathematics, science and social studies subjects would be taught in English. The School Education Department had issued instructions for the implementation of the decision of the federal government, he said, adding, however, the government of the Punjab was implementing the decision gradually.

In the first phase, he said, some primary, middle and high schools have been selected where the above mentioned three subjects would be taught in English. From April 1, 2010, some more schools have been included in the programme, whereas, from April 1, 2011, all schools would be converted into English medium schools.

The spokesman said the training programme aimed at improving the teaching skills of the teachers, which the teachers would have to pay nothing for.

On the other hand, the government has taken many steps for the welfare of teachers, approving heavy package for the financial benefits of the teachers. The teachers protest reflects negative approach towards constructive initiative. Come what may, the government would keep on working on the initiatives, he added. The news

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BISE pen-down strike threatens matric exams
Lahore: Employees of the Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education (BISE) Lahore on Wednesday observed a pen-down strike and demonstrated in front of the BISE building.

The employees shouted slogans against the government for not issuing a grant to the education department in relation to the payment of the matriculation examination fees. They demanded the government releases grants for payment of the fees immediately as promised, instead of abolishing the cost requirement altogether.

Earlier this week, the Employees Welfare Union of BISE had threatened to boycott the upcoming matriculation examinations.

In December 2009, employees of various unions, along with BISE members, observed strikes and protested against the announcement of the Punjab chief minister (CM) regarding the abolition of examinations and registration fees for students of public sector educational institutions.

They claimed that since the educational boards were autonomous bodies and generated revenue on their own, the CM's decision would have an adverse financial impact on education boards. Daily times

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KU reschedules BCom, BA exams
Karachi: The Controller of Examination at the University of Karachi on Wednesday announced that B.Com Part-I paper-VI (Economics Analysis and Policy) and B.A (H.I.S), Fine Arts (Theory) part II Examinations 2009 have been rescheduled. The papers to be held on Sunday February 6 2009 will now be held on February 14. However, timings and centre will remain the same.

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Teaching hospitals upgradation
Karachi: The Sindh Assembly unanimously passed a resolution on Wednesday, urging the government to establish liver disease centres at teaching hospitals in Karachi, Hyderabad, Sukkur, Benazirabad (Nawabshah) and Larkana to prevent the increasing incidence of hepatitis in the province.

Sindh Chief Minister (CM) Qaim Ali Shah, in a rare development, took personal interest in the resolution, which was moved by Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) legislator, Heer Soho. Shah said that diagnosis centres would be established in 70 per cent of the districts in the province during the current financial year, adding that the government would "progressively improve the situation." He also promised to set up diagnosis centres for early detection of hepatitis in each hospital of all districts, albeit on a gradual basis.

Talking on the resolution, the CM said that the government, taking cognizance of growing incidents of Hepatitis-B and C in the province, had announced Rs2 billion for the prevention and control of the disease in the budget last year, while another Rs1 billion would be added to this year's budget under the same head, as treatment of hepatitis was very expensive.

The CM said that when he took charge, there were only two diagnosis centres for hepatitis, one each in Karachi and Hyderabad. He said that now, such centres had been established at every divisional headquarter, while treatment was made available in each district.

Shah claimed that thus far, around 40,000 people had been treated against hepatitis. He also maintained that he had suspended health officials who did not provide treatment to patients suffering from hepatitis.

Heer Soho, the mover of the resolution, said that an estimated two million patients were suffering from Hepatitis-B and C in the province, but there were no facilities for treating the ailment and neither were qualified doctors available. She said that no liver transplant facility existed in the province, while treatment abroad costs around Rs1 million.

Sindh Revenue Minister Jam Mehtab Dahar said that the unnecessary use of syringes by 'quacks' and the practice of injecting unscreened blood were the main causes of hepatitis. He said that since treatment of hepatitis was very expensive, special funds had been reserved by the government. He also underlined the importance of creating awareness about the causes of hepatitis.

Law Minister Ayaz Soomro said that the government was considering proposals to establish hospitals in each union council. He said that since such a project entailed financial implications, liver disease centres would be established in phases.

MQM's parliamentary leader, Syed Sardar Ahmed, said that the proposed centres at teaching hospitals in major cities would be of great significance. However, he said, such centres could not be established in 23 districts because of resource constraints.

Dr Sikander Shoro underlined the significance of early diagnosis of liver diseases to avoid complications.

Sardar Jam Tamachi suggested starting 'mobile laboratories' to provide testing facility for liver diseases as well as to administer vaccines to patients on concessional rates. He said that proper care should also be exercised this year to import vaccines to control hepatitis, as these kind of vaccines had proved to be already expired last year.

Pakistan Muslim League-Functional (PML-F) legislator Nusrat Abbasi and Industries Minister Rauf Siddiqi suggested reducing administrative expenditure and 'foreign trips' to save money for providing basic health to the people.

Culture Minister Sassui Palijo, while supporting the resolution, said that "ground realities" should not be overlooked, as infrastructure did not exist for liver diseases. She claimed that many diseases could be prevented by controlling the supply of contaminated water.

Katchi Abadis Minister Rafiq Engineer, Tourism Minister Shazia Marri, Dr Rafiq Banban, Sharjeel Memon, Amir Moin Pirzada and Shamim Ara Panhwar also spoke in favour of the resolution, and urged the government to provide treatment and diagnosis facilities in remote districts of Sindh, such as Thar. The news

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LCWU interactive session
Lahore: A keen observation, good knowledge and exploration of your surroundings are the fundamentals for any form of writing, renowned columnist and playwright Munno Bhai said.

He was relating his experiences to Lahore College for Women University (LCWU) Mass Communication students in an interactive session held on Wednesday. Advocating gender equality, he said in ancient civilisations women had introduced various innovations. Daily times

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New Institute at LGH
Lahore: Principal of the Post-Graduate Medical Institute (PGMI) and Lahore General Hospital (LGH), Prof Dr Tariq Sallahuddin, has said that Chief Minister Mian Shahbaz Sharif has given approval for establishment of the Institute of Neurosciences at the LGH and released a token grant of Rs 10 million for this purpose.

Dr Sallahuddin was addressing a function organised for giving appointment letters to 151 nurses of the LGH who had been regularised on the directions of Punjab chief minister at the hospital, a handout said on Wednesday. MS Dr Iqbal Kazmi, AMS, Dr Abdul Basit, Nursing Superintendent Ishrat Ishaq and doctors and nurses attended the ceremony.

The PGMI principal further said that it was an established fact that nurses were the backbone of healthcare system and medical sector was incomplete without them, adding that the Institute of Nursing would be set up at the LGH and steps would also be taken to award foreign scholarships to nurses.

Talking on the occasion, the nurses, who were regularised, thanked the chief minister, saying he had given them economic security and they would serve patients with more commitment and dedication.

The nurses said that they had been working on a contract basis since 1999 and their regularisation had brought happiness to their families. The news

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