Jan 28, 2013

Education for all - Are the Govt. honestly investing allocated Education budget - Or where the amount goes?.

Education unequivocally plays a very pivotal and vital role to uplift the economy, status of the country & countrymen to advance further in life. Since education is very crucial sector& core need of the day, constant falling of educational graph has caused more impoverishment in the country.
CM and Governors of all provinces should be serious. Through education we can get rid of vicious cycle of poverty, enables people to understand & foresee the barriers and impediments cropping into the way of country’s economy & people needs.

Education persuades guides and convinces people to take corrective measures for socio economic development, economic growth and holistic development.

The paradigm of country development squarely hinges upon ‘education’ leading to social capital formation. It builds human capabilities to accelerate pace of industrialization in the country, economic growth & development through knowledge and creativity, innovation and skills.

It’s a sine qua non & prerequisite in all initiative, our prosperity and self-sufficiency towards multiple economic variables definitely relies on ‘education’ so for the govt. to look with more seriousness and without loss of time indeed required to validate across the region, entailing that every single fills of education budget is spent on Education only.

The basic need before us is to prepare our youngster and youth who are our hope & they have to take over the reign of Pakistan, enabling them to use education as a driver which will empower them to move forward and progress the country discussed at national forum.

We have been emphasizing a lot that ‘Education for all’ at national forum and even in National and Provincial assemblies but what happens?

No doubt Govt. envisions, envisages and allocates billions of amounts every year for Education sector while budgeting for different mandatory heads. Not only Govt. supports but other donor agencies, NGOs and External countries also do investment to provide education for Pakistani boys & girls at primary, secondary & higher secondary level.

But when we see the status of educational institutions, even school existence seems missing & in terms of school building, furniture and fixtures, staff of the school, facilities at the school exposing a ruinous condition, a complete disastrous.

During live coverage through media highlighted on national TV channels we get an opposite picture of the school running across the country whether in cities or in interiors, even not a single province do their duties honestly and sincerely resulting our children are unable to go to school, because the basics needs at the school are not available.

Apparently condition of school in small & big city - Though schools are there but no furniture, broken & faded blackboards, no drinking water, no lavatories, school ceiling giving a real threat, iron bars are visible, plaster has been peeled off, broken doors & windows, swinging electric wire and electric circuit boards, damaged & uneven floor with salinity.

And if there is lavatory it is chocked, no proper sewerage system and the school is surrounded with overflowing gutters the children face severe problem to get into the school. The environment is clouded with heavy stink, stagnant water emitting bad odors due to its passivity and despite complaints with Municipality no response is seen said by annoyed school teacher.

The basic problem that our MPA/ MNAs they don’t visit their constituency after winning the election, if they do their duty considering the problems being countered by the inhabitants of the same area from where the minster qualified perhaps they do something but the reality that they never ever visits after election. People problem remains unattended; it goes from bad to worse.  

Even MNA/ MPAs get the loan and funds in the name of ‘development program’ & claims to do on grass root level but it goes closed in the paper, the loans are acquired, project initiated, project executed and projects are closed on papers. What inhumanity, denounced by a senior citizen.   

The problem almost is similar across the region which needs immediate attention from educational authorities to look and resolve it. The children are the future stake holder in assemblies so we have to give them a good school, a bright and vibrant future, asked by group of people who gathered around media team while visited.

Further, the situation of school in villages & in districts of provinces are not different, it gives more gloomy and groaning. There are schools but no students, no teacher.

In the school vehicles are parked by influential lords of the territory - In the school cultivated crops are stored. The School has been converted into herd of cattle The School is taken over by territory police and School walls are used for dung producing center and in some places School has been taken over by drug addict.  

In some places there are school but only four wall and ceiling, no electricity, no furniture, no door and windows, no drinking water, no toilet and un plastered floor. It refers the school situated in Ms. Hina Rabbani (Minster for foreign affairs)’s constituency, one example said by private TV channel

The class teacher was taking the class outside the school with some boys. When asked by media correspondent, Teacher said we have been requesting with local authority but no avail. Further, residents gathered around media team said that there is no gas, no electricity and drinking water pipe lines, people use tube well & collecting dry wooden for fuel to cook said by one of the seasoned resident.

In Karachi school is going to convert into a Restaurant & students have been accommodated temporary in another building. Despite hue and cry from parents and school staff nobody is there to listen. School building has been captured and new complex is being built. Though govt. official visited the area, they console or sympathize but ends in fiasco. Our children are sitting on the ground it does not look that we are in technological age rather looks a stone age said by angry mother.

School inner and outer condition in interior Sind, Punjab & Pakhtoon khawa are mentioned below

School status in Sindh - Condition of Govt. School in Sindh rural and urban are very disappointing, some of the school in urban area has been converted into marriage hall. No teacher no student. Education sector for which govt. envisaged heavy budgets & funded by other donor agency but the status of school across the provinces are pathetic & clumsy has turned into a ghost institution.

The billions of amount are budgeted for Education sector to build school or to renovate school but neither quantitatively nor qualitatively have any changes been seen. It’s a complete failure - No check and balance where the amounts go?

According to recent report of Sind Ministry of Education– 12,794 school are shelter less– 34,386 are without electricity – 26,669 school does not have four sided boundary wall - 23,349 does not have wash room & 25,237 have no access to drinking water.

In 2010-2011 - There are 48,914 educational institutions of public sector in Sindh with a total enrollment of 4,402,993 students. But due to heavy damages of Government primary, middle, secondary and higher secondary 6,847 Schools got damaged completely, that constitutes around 14 percent of total Public sector schools of Sindh.

Some schools buildings were totally collapsed while other are partially damaged in the shape of lost room walls, boundary walls, removal of roof due to windstorm, and land erosion etc. according to an initial assessment by Department of Education, District Education Officers, Assistant Educations Officers and Director Education Planning Sind region.

Among the total damaged schools, 42.86 percent are damaged due to floods, 33.32 percent are damaged due to IDP, 17.06 percent due to rains and 6.22 due to multiple of these.

Status of school in Punjab - The Punjab Govt. philosophy on education seems that ‘only those who are eligible to vote have right of education’ therefore, lavish expenditure is being done on university students and projects which gets media attention but no effort is undertaken for the schools in villages and towns.

As per article 25-A, after 18th Amendment, the State is responsible for providing free education for children between 5-16 years of age but the Punjab Government has not yet initiated any legislation to provide free education to the poor students of government schools, while it has spent billions of rupees for the construction of Danish Schools and distribution of laptops among students of colleges and universities.

Chief Justice Azmat Saeed, LHC also expressed his anger on the lack of seriousness of Punjab Govt. Published The Nation,12-Apr-2012.

School in Khyber Pakhtunkhawa (former NWFP) - The number of school closed in the province in 2008-09 was 477 which include 358 girls school

According to report EMIS in 2009 that during 2009-10 the number of closed school were 512, it refers the record of 2010-11 stood at 417 which further reduced to 350 according to recent report of education department.

The reason of school closure assigned social disputes, illegal occupation of school building, and dispute over employment stated by Provincial Minister Elementary& Secondary Education Sardar Hussein Babak.

During earthquake in 2005, there were 612 schools those were pulled down to clean the area, despite reminder from inhabitants & by MNA/ MPA with federal govt. no action has been taken so far. Boys and girl are studying in the tents & without tents – not mention for weather vagaries.

The number of such schools was 332 in Mansehra, 153 in Battagram, 62 in Abbottabad, 75 in Shangla. The amount for renovation had been estimated Rs.3 billion by then govt. which still could not approve to reconstruct the bulldozed school - Dawn 14th Aug 2012

The govt. at this juncture should take immediate action to renovate schools those have been collapsed during floods. It is empirical evidence that the quality of school buildings impacts student behavior, including vandalism, absenteeism, suspensions, disciplinary incidents, violence.

On the contrary, if the basic facilities in the schools are available it will attract students to join school, such as easy access of reading material, class room cleanliness, white washed wall, painted door and windows, clean drinking water and lavatory system, playground, sports arrangement among schools, picnic and parties, contest in reading and writing, appreciation and recognition certificate, gift distribution like school bag, copies, instruments boxes, drawing & comic books, painting & graphic sheets, birthday celebration etc. are the encouraging symptoms which creates excitement and curiosity among students and trust is built between teachers and students.

Infrastructure availability, school design, equipped with science & computer lab, library availability are the resources, motivates the students. So the MNA/ MPAs should genuinely be serious to spend the allocated amount in school at primary, secondary and higher secondary level, believing that you are the crusader, people have voted you to serve them to support and help them. You (MNA/MPAs) have mandate to serve the people of Pakistan otherwise the same people have strength to get you down said by NGOs discussing at talk show.
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