Punjab private schools problems

Problems of Private Educational Institutions
Islamabad, Feb 17: As the government is considering the fate of Private Educational Institutions Regulatory Authority (PEIRA), the representatives of private schools are perturbed that they have not been included in the consultation process.

The authority was constituted in 2006 through promulgation of an ordinance by the then President Musharraf. The ordinance required approval from the Parliament or be reissued and the president had given extension of 120 days to the ordinance, which is going to end on March 10.

That is why NA Standing Committee on Education has constituted a sub-committee to review the ordinance.

The members of the sub-committee including Dr Azra Fazal Pechuho, Begum Nuzhat Sadiq and Justice(R) Fakhar-un-Nisa, reportedly, did not consult the representatives of the private schools at any level.

Nuzhat Sadiq said thorough deliberations would be made before tabling it in the parliament and it would be ensured that point of view of the representatives of private schools is included in the bill.

The owners of the private schools have voiced their concerns on many occasions and demanded to change the self-finance position of the authority, which is creating problems for the schools instead of helping. They say it is burdening them by charging heavy amounts of funds in terms of security fee, registration fee and inspection fee.

President of All Pakistan Private Schools and Colleges Owners' Association, Abrar Hussain, said as the authority doesn't get funds from the govt, it draws funds from the schools to give salaries to its staff and pay rent of its building which has doubled financial burden eventually for the students.

The owners of the private schools have complained that they have paid 12,000 to 50,000 rupees to get registration from the authority and they have to renew their registration after two years whereas in other parts of the country, private schools renew their registration after five years. After two years, each school pays 7,000 to 25,000 rupees for renewal of registration.

According to statistics, besides government schools currently 700 private schools have been working in the capital in which 1,85000 students have been given education and still thousands of children are out of schools. Across the country 350 million children are out of school. The nation

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NOCs issuance decision
Rawalpindi: The Rawalpindi Association of Private Schools (RAPS) Tuesday appreciated the station commander for his decision of issuing NOCs to private schools.

The general body of RAPS met with its president Captain (r) Ameer-ud-Din in the chair. Vice President Nasreen Tariq, General Secretary Group Captain (r) Asif Mehmood, Secretary Tahmeena Malik and school principals attended the meeting.

The RAPS president said that the station commander has started inspection of schools for issuance of NOCs and gave directions for necessary security requirements for getting NOCs. "We would complete all security requirements. Most of the schools had already completed the security requirements.

Talks with the station commander are underway on other problems which would be resolved soon," he added. The participants of the meeting also offered 'dua' for late Major General Bilal Omer Khan and for other martyrs of the Parade Lane incident. The news

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Report card system in schools on cards
Peshawar: The elementary and secondary education department is working on a plan to introduce 'School Report Card System' to improve standard of education in the government-run schools across the province, sources say.

The schools would be divided into different categories according to their performance under the School Report Card System (SRCS), an official said.

"Now all schools have the same level. Presently there is no distinction among the schools showing good and poor results. No one knows why the students of certain schools are brilliant or otherwise," he said.

The official said that there were no evaluation criteria for the schools and people had lost trust in the government schools.

"Even teachers are reluctant to admit their children to the government schools, where they himself teach. If the headmaster of a school is competent and hardworking, the students will show good results. Otherwise, there is no other way to improve the standard of education in the government schools," he added.

Under SRCS, a framework would be designed to evaluate the performance of students, teachers and headmasters. First, the schools would be divided in three categories on the bases of their results. The schools showing best results would be put in category 'A' following by category 'B' and 'C'.

"The schools in category 'A' will be given special incentives like increasing their annual budget of parents teachers council for encouragement," the official said. He said that strategy would be devised by a regulatory authority to improve the standard of schools put in categories 'B' and 'C'. "We will try to convert category B schools into A and C into B," he said.

The regulatory authority will ascertain reasons as to why some schools show poor results. It will also propose ways to improve the standard of education in NWFP.

When asked about any punishment for the teachers and headmasters of a school showing poor results, the official said: "Yes there will be punishment for the teachers but it is yet to be decided what type of punishment it will be."

First the plan would be implemented in the primary schools followed by middle, high and higher secondary schools. The selection of the schools would be made according to the infrastructure, number of classrooms, students and teachers there.

The additional secretary of elementary and secondary schools, Qaiser Alam, when contacted, said that soon a meeting would be called to chalk out implementation of the plan. He said such programme had already been implemented in various countries. He said that donor agencies would provide fund for implementation of SRCS. Dawn

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HEC's role in education
Islamabad: Ambassador of Azerbaijan in Pakistan Dr. Eynullah Madatli called on Chairman Higher Education Commission (HEC) Dr. Javaid R. Laghari on Tuesday and lauded the role of HEC in promoting higher education in the country.

Dr Eynullah Madatli briefed Dr. Javaid R. Laghari about higher education in Azerbaijan.

He said there were 42 universities, including 21 public ones, in Azerbaijan serving nine million population of the country.

A large number of Pakistani students were pursuing higher studies in various disciplines in different universities of Azerbaijan. The medium of education was their native language but some universities also offered academic programmes in English.

He said that the Quaid-e-Azam University had developed academic linkage with a University of Azerbaijan and some of the graduates of COMSATS Institute of Information Technology had been employed as faculty members in different universities of Azerbaijan.

He said the Minister of Education of Azerbaijan had already visited Pakistan and the areas of mutual cooperation in education were discussed.

The Chairman HEC, shared with the Ambassador the status of higher education in Pakistan and the role of HEC in promoting higher education in the country.

He said that the higher education sector had grown significantly since the establishment of HEC and a large number of students of Pakistan were pursuing their higher studies in 22 universities around the world.

He said that National Law University would be established this year at Islamabad with its two campuses in Lahore and Karachi.

He said that five universities of Pakistan had been ranked among the top 600 universities of the world and the HEC was striving to bring the Pakistani universities in top 200 universities of the world.

He said that the thrust of HEC was upon increasing access to the higher education, improving information technology, increasing research and development in the country and creating more employment opportunities, and HEC had funded the universities to a large extent to achieve these objectives.

The Chairman emphasized the role of higher education in the economic uplift of the country and HEC was striving hard to improve relevance of research and the quality of higher education in Pakistan.

He stressed upon the need of fostering better cooperation between the two countries in the field of education.APP

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