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KARACHI: Luminary Learning Circle Foundation laid a groundbreaking ceremony of the Javed Miandad Campus on Sunday on one-acre land acquired from the Sindh government.

According to the press statement; the foundation stone lying ceremony of a new “Javed Miandad Campus” attended by  Member of National Assembly Engineer Najeeb Haroon, Abdul Sattar Sheikh of the Sindh Social Development,  Syed Sohail Hassan and Javed Miadad.

On the occasion, organizers of the institute, teachers, and mothers of the children were also present. Around 300 children studying in Luminary Learning Circle Foudation in which nursery and primary education is being imparted on state-of-the-art lines. No fee is charged from the children. They are given uniforms, books, bags, shoes etc. as well as one-time meal. Also, the construction work in this new “Javed Miandad Campus” will be completed in one year and next year about 500 children will be added on a merit basis.

KARACHI: The Federal Ministry of Education and Professional Training has approved a new board of religious education named Majma-ul-Uloom-ul-Islamia Pakistan that formed by Karachi’s two largest religious seminaries—Jamia Binoria Al-Aalmia and Jamia Tur Rasheed.

The introductory ceremony of the board held at Al-Rasheed Tur Rasheed Ahsanabad in which Mufti Abdul Rahim, Mufti Noman Naeem, and other administrators of both, the seminaries participated. Mufti Abdul Rahim will be the chairman of the board and Maulana Noman Naeem will be the deputy chairman and Shaykh-ul-Hadeeth Mufti Muhammad would be the controller the new board.

On the occasion, the speakers informed that the new board would promote modern education with religious studies at madrassa so that students of seminaries could avail the equal opportunity and play their role in the development of society as well.

“The purpose of the board is to impart modern education along with religion to the students of madrassas,” said Mufti Noman Naeem, added “we have always supported a combination of religious studies and modern education.

At present, Jamia Binoria Al-Aalmia has 58 departments, out of which 25 are purely academic with 800 foreign students from 54 different countries and thousands of Pakistani students. “We wanted to have a board that could issue certificates and degrees to these students”, he said.

On the occasion, Maulana Farhan Naeem of the Jamia Binoria Aalmia said that the efforts of both seminaries are very commendable as they have long been concerned for the future of its foreign students who would get no degree after completion of education. But now they would get relevant certificates and degrees. These students have been studying with us for so many years.

We wanted the education of these students to be accepted worldwide as well. In the coming months all braches of these two seminaries and some other like-minded administrators would receive affiliation of the new board.

 

KARACHI: Saudi Arabia and Pakistan have historically been like family to one another and education can be the common thread to stitch them, closer,” says Omar Farooqui, founder of Coded Minds, a global ed-tech company.  “Both countries have immense knowledge pools and research-driven institutions. Sharing of knowledge and formation of public-private partnerships can help implement modernization across both nations in terms of bringing 21st-century quantum leap in their respective ways of being.”

Farooqui who belongs to Jeddah has become the first-ever Saudi Educationist who has invested in the private education system in Pakistan. His company Coded Minds Pakistan is set to provide STEM education to about 6 million students across Pakistan.

The present visit of the Pakistani premier to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia may have been read as a regular cordial visit during the holy month of Ramadan; it has revealed many untapped markets and open lots of new doors of opportunities between both countries. According to different sources, more than 30 public and private Saudi companies are keen to invest in Pakistan including Saudi giants like Aramco, SABIC, and ACWA Power. However, Farooqui’s Coded Minds appears to be the only Saudi private venture which is investing in the Pakistani education sector.

Why Pakistan? Farooqui says that [ being a Saudi-owned global company], he has a first movers advantage in the Pakistani education sector. “Pakistan has huge potential in all aspects of business sectors but it remains an untapped market. It needs a first mover to take a chance on it and education is one such sector through policy influence can become a catalyst of change for a nation.”

With ancestors from Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Saudi national, Jeddah raised, Farooqui, is a visible happy man. “I am one of the rarest fortunate who is a living example of the strong bond of both the countries.  That’s why I truly believe that education should always have been beyond boundaries by design and it is something we practice every day on our platform.”

While responding that how the world is taking the new avatar of the Kingdom reforms and its growing relations with Pakistan, the second most populous Muslim country and the fifth largest country in the world, he says that the world has no choice but to take notice of the remarkable changes. “The Kingdom has a young hungry population that is by nature entrepreneurial and needs a platform to speak. While Pakistan is the 5th largest country in the world and by natural selection relies on its human capital and large diaspora spread across the world ready willing and able to come back. Both in a way are intertwined in a revolution of sorts. Pakistan- Saudi brotherhood is a strategic wall that is crucial to the future of world trade. Pakistan’s human capital and Saudi Arabian black gold might be combined can have far-reaching consequences. Pakistan can be a testing ground for significant breakthroughs in new-age technology as it becomes a marketplace of talent to tap into,” he added

KARACHI: In reaction to the recent decision taken by NCOC about the closure of educational institutes till May 23, the private school associations of Sindh have said that the concerned authorities have taken a discriminative decision against the schools by keeping them closed while other sectors will remain open after May 17.

The All Private Schools Management Association Chairman Syed Tariq Shah said that our association believes that if the government was intended to extend the lockdown and keeping other sectors along with schools, we won’t criticize such a decision. However, if other sectors were allowed to operate after Eid, then it would be an injustice with the private sector of education.

The school owners are thoroughly implementing the Covid-19 SOPs while other sectors don’t care. Thus, targeting only schools won’t serve the cause. “Our demand from the NCOC is that the lockdown for the larger interest of students and nation is acceptable to us, in case all the sectors remain closed. Else, the decision is biased and discriminative against the schools. Even all the private school associations have ensured the provincial government and the federal government that they will be strictly following the SOPS”

He said that schools are the places where teachers can assist the government by giving awareness to the students about the precautions and SOPs. The rest of the sectors such as factories, markets, transport, and others don’t have any organized workforces who can play a role in spreading awareness among their workers and the general public.

He said that the private education sector is already suffering from difficulties. If they remain closed, more schools would end operations. The school owners were not receiving any financial assistance from the government. As a result, the number of out of school children would be increased while Pakistan has the second-largest out-of-school children population in the world.

“We have to complete the ongoing session years while exams would be held in the next two or three months. Therefore, the committee should also consider the best interest of students and parents,” he concluded.

Among other associations which oppose the recent NCOC decision were included All Sindh Private Schools and Colleges Association, All Private Schools Management Association Sindh, Peak Private School Association, Private Schools Management Association, Alliance of Private Schools Sindh, Association of Private Schools Sind, Pakistan Academic Consortium, Hadeed Private Schools Association, Karachi Private Schools Federation, Friends Private Schools Association.

LAHORE: All Pakistan Private Schools Federation (APPSF) has condemned the decision of NCOC of extension the ongoing schools closure, and said that instead of keeping the campuses closed the government should go for micro lockdown.
President APPSF Kashif Mirza said that the schools have already faced an irreparable loss of education of 75 million students and it is impossible to make up for the educational loss due to lockdown especially when 25 million children in Pakistan are out of schools.
Mirza demanded to vaccinate all the children and teachers on priority basis despite of schools closure.
Mirza further demanded the government to provide free laptops, net facilities along with devices to the students.
Kashif Mirza also rejected the government’s decision to cancel all examinations till 15th June. APPSF President Kashif Mirza said the government would have to fully implement the SOPs but it failed to do so.
He said the cancellation of exams would leave a drastic impact on the students’ future and they would lose six to seventh months to be promoted to the next class.
Kashif Mirza cited that different global organisations have advised keeping schools open while reciting results of Gallup’s survey according to which 87% of parents want resumption of schools.
He said political gatherings should be banned instead as the same were threats to the lives of millions of people. He said that a large number of children who did not go to school because of closure were becoming part of child labour.
He further said the closure was also resulting in economic murder of thousands of teachers and people associated with schools.
All Pakistan Private Schools Federation (APPSF) President Kashif Mirza applauded the government’s decision to resume educational activities for grade 9-12 across the country after over a month’s gap but at the same time, objected to following the phase-wise regime.
He called for the government to reopen educational institutions to save students’ academic year from wasting.
Shutting down schools was not the solution to the problem, Mirza said, and added that the association believes the use of the option of targeted micro-lockdown across the country to stem contagion spread.
He said that the continuous closure of private schools across the country has hurt owners as almost 10,000 schools across the country have been shut down and around 700,000 teachers have become unemployed.
Mirza further demanded the government announce a relief package for teachers.
He said that according to UNICEF, the closure of schools during the coronavirus pandemic had proven to be counter-productive while as many as 40 million children in Pakistan were affected due to schools’ shut down.

LAHORE: Punjab Education Foundation (PEF) has released Rs 1.32 billion payments for its partner schools against the fee of March 2021. According to details, the PEF management has submitted the cheque of the said amount in the bank after approval from MD PEF Asad Naeem.

In a statement, MD PEF Asad Naeem said that Rs 8 billion of PEF has been released from Finance Ministry and reached the treasurer office. Soon this amount will be transferred to the PEF bank account, he said adding that transfer of amount from Finance Department to PEF account takes much time.

He went on to say that PEF management will keep working on payments of April and May during the Eid holidays as these payments will be made during May. It has also been decided that payments of 3 lac new admissions will be made along with April and May, he added.

He also announced that the arrears of new nominations of EVS Program Phase 1 to 15 will also be made in the current month

KARACHI: During the recent closure of educational institutes owing to the third wave of Covid-19, around 15 low-fee privately-owned schools in the Karachi region have been shut down by their administrators.

The school owners while informing the officials of the Directorate of Inspection and Registration of Private Institutes Sindh have said that they have been struggling to survive and overcome the financial crunch during the closure of schools, but failed to continue. “We will not be able to continue our operations. We have already vacated the premises and informed the parents regarding our decision,” a letter written by the owner of Star Links School Muhammad Omer Naqi reads.

Another schoolowner of the The Smart School, located in Gulshan-e-Iqbal area, in his letter to the DIRPIS officials has said that the current closure of schools has been presented an immense economic pursue on the struggling business. “With the current situation in hand and free recovery on almost half, we are unable to continue our school. We have already vacated the premises and informed the parents regarding the closure of the campus”

Similarly, as many as 13 other school owners have also written letters to the DIRPIS that they would be unable to operate their in future. According to the statistics provided by an officer of the directorate, apart from those 13 schools around 8 other schools located in various areas of the metropolis have also vacated the building in which they were operating their sub-campuses and braches. They are included the Smart School Landhi, Whit Rose School Korangi No 6, Sunrise School, Star kids School, The Quaid School Orangi, Al-Rehman Public School New Karachi,  Children Academy New Karachi, and Royal Grammar School Baldia Town.

Commenting on the issue the All Sindh Private Schools and Colleges Association’s Chairman Haider Ali said that during the last 14 months the Covid-19 pandemic has affected almost all walks of life but the education sector suffered the worst damages. The international organizations have also accepted that the education sector across the globe has been facing long-lasting disruptions.

He said that they believe that shutting down educational institutions in the first, second, and third wave of the Covid-19 was not a single solution to restrict the spread of Covid-19. The authorities should have treated all the sectors, equally.  The irony was the ruling parties held public gatherings but there was no one to ask them.

He said that out of 14 months, the schools remain closed for around 11 months. During this period the school owners were forced to pay salaries of the teachers, rent, utility bills, and even 20 percent concession in tuition fees.  This situation resulted in the permanent closure of the low-fee private schools.

He pointed out that around 500 private schools in Sindh have already stopped operations when the provincial government announced closure during the second wave of Covid-19. However, now the situation is that the concerned authorizes are not serious to financially assist the low-cost schools. Therefore, it is expected that more would close operations.

Ali further stated that when administrators shut down their schools for good, they don’t inform the associations to which they are affiliated. Therefore, it might be difficult to trace the number of permanently closed schools during pandemic.

KARACHI: The Sindh government had set the budget of the education department for schools, colleges and maintenance and repair at Rs 21 billion in 2021. Out of this amount, Rs 12 billion was released and Rs 8.2 billion has been spent, so far.

“We have shuttered the schools, of which chances of revival were very low while out of 2247 around1609 schools which were closed due to shortage of teachers have been reopened. The remaining 638 schools would be functionalized in the ongoing fiscal year” said Education and Labour Minister Saeed Ghani.

The minister expressed these views while participating in the pre-budget debate in the Sindh Assembly on Friday. He claimed that the statistics and facts are quite the opposite while the work done by the education and labor departments is historic.

Ghani maintained that we are being criticized for the quality of education department, but the ground facts and evidence testify that Sindh is the only province which has faced the same kind of difficulties especially during the last two years. “We have taken historic steps to make education better. More tangible steps were in terms of online education as compared to other provinces”

He said; “we, in collaboration with Microsoft, have made it possible to extend online to school level in Sind. Even now 257,000 students are benefiting from it and we have also provided training to 30,787 secondary teachers”

At the same time, under the Sindh Education Foundation’s Microsoft online program, around 252000 children across the province are studying online. Likewise, more than 4000 primary school teachers have been trained to provide education to these children.

Saeed Ghani said that this year, 70 percent of the education department released budget has been spent on colleges and schools, while 55% of M&R released budget has been utilized. He said that out of 269 ongoing schemes of schools, 155 schemes including 1993 schools would be completed by June, while out of 69 schemes of the college, 24 schemes would be completed in the current financial year, under which 29 colleges and 2 cadet colleges will be completed.

Saeed Ghani said that some quarters of the society criticized us for the lack of furniture in schools while the fact is that the stay order was imposed by the esteemed judiciary in this regard for the last two years. But in April the stay order was expired, after which tenders have been issued.

“We need 1.6 million desks across the province and this is not possible in a few months. However, we will be able to ensure the availability of furniture at schools by this financial year and the beginning of the next financial year,” he said.

He said that we have signed MoU with IBA Sukkur for recruitment of 37 thousand new teachers on merit and applications have been submitted for the recruitment of PST teachers this year. However, at present due to the Covid-19 situation IBA could not hold exams.

He said that in order to improve the quality of education, the grade of PST teachers has been uplifted from 9 to 14, while now when primary teachers are recruited they will be recruited as primary teachers and will also be retired as primary teachers.

He said that for the training of teachers, we have made arrangements for the institutes across the province to get admission on merit under public-private partnership and get certificates on 100% merit so that qualified teachers could be available at each school.

Karachi:  In the pursuance of the Sindh government notification, all public and private sector varsities, colleges, schools, and examination boards across the province announced public holidays from May 10 to 15.

Earlier, the Government of Sind Services, General Administration and Coordination Department in a notification issued on Friday said; “the provincial government declares 10th to 15th May 2021, from Monday to Saturday as public holidays on the occasion of holy festival Eid-ul-Fitr throughout the province for all government offices, autonomous bodies, corporations, and local councils under the administrative control of the Sindh government”

However, essential services and the departments and offices engaged in prevention and control of Covid-19 emergency would work as usual.

Following the provincial government orders, the University of Karachi, University of Sindh, Board of Intermediate Education Karachi, Board of Secondary Education Karachi, Shaheed Benazir Bhutto University Shaheed Benazir Abad, Benazir Bhutto Shaheed University Lyari, and many others announced holidays in their respective organizations.

LAHORE: Due to COVID 19 emergency, University of Engineering and Technology (UET) Lahore has postponed the Entry Test (ECAT 2021) until further orders, which was scheduled to be held from 24 to 27 May 2021 across Punjab.

Similarly, the mock test has also been postponed which was scheduled to be held on 21 and 22 May 2021. However, the process of registration will remain continue and students can now get this opportunity till further notice. It is clarified that the Entry Test is a requirement for admission into all public sector engineering/ engineering technology institutes/ universities of the Punjab.

Registration for the Entry Test will remain open until announcement of new dates and prescribed HBL branches will continue to sell Entry Test Tokens until further notification. Further, facility to get token number through on-line/ Konnect challan facility will remain functional. Candidates are advised to get themselves registered as early as possible to avoid inconvenience due to filling of VU centers.

Candidates who have already registered are advised to re-print their admit cards once new Test dates are announced. The Admit Cards will automatically be updated.