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Only one person cannot fix all schools: Ghani - The Financial Daily International


ASER report highlights the shortcomings of Pakistan's educational system - The Express Tribune

KARACHI: Education has always been a critical issue for developing countries like Pakistan and despite the government’s efforts and foreign funding to combat the educational system’s myriad shortcomings, little has been done to mitigate the crisis. This particularly holds true for the rural areas of Pakistan where the educational structure is dismal, to say the least.

This was recently highlighted in the 2019 Annual Status of Education Report (ASER) that was compiled and launched by the Idara-i-Taleem-o-Aagahi (ITA), a public trust striving to promote education in Pakistan.

The survey for the report was conducted across 155 rural and 20 urban districts of Pakistan to assess the learning outcomes of children aged five to sixteen.

Authored by different researchers, the ASER examined the educational system in rural and urban areas of the country while keeping in mind the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals, specifically SDG 4, which is to ‘Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all. ‘

Researchers conducted a well-rounded, door-to-door survey in rural areas of the country and while they highlighted a few milestone achievements, the overall picture turned out to be quite grim and pointed toward the country’s chronically-underdeveloped educational system.

The learning crisis

The report cuttingly points out that despite better learning trends in 2019 as compared to previous years, the rural part of the country is still in crisis as 41% of fifth-grade children are unable to read a simple story in basic languages, such as Urdu, Sindhi, and Pashto. Adding to it, the report also indicates that 14% of children in lower secondary schools are also unable to read a standard two-level story. This situation, per ASER’s findings, puts Pakistan’s rural areas on declining levels of achievements and amplifies the call for action to the fundamental challenge that mere enrolment or schooling does not equate to learning.

Speaking to The Express Tribune on the on-going learning crisis, Dr Syed Kamal, former director National Education Assessment System (NEAS) said that in order to improve reading and writing skills, parents and teachers should foster a reading environment in homes and schools.

“Inculcating reading habits at home can be the beginning of overall learning cycle which our country desperately needs right now,” he said.

Gender disparity in education

Akin to other fields in Pakistan, gender difference also exists in the educational system, that too to a serious extent. Per the survey, the gender gap in learning continues as boys outperformed girls (age five-sixteen) in literacy and also in numeracy skills. This has a lot to do with the fact that education for girls is still an issue and how little attention is paid to it in rural districts. More importantly, the report also talks about how important it is for a woman to be literate by referring to mothers with primary education as ‘a rich untapped resource.’

Marginalisation of children with disabilities

The report also highlights a very important aspect of what’s missing in Pakistan’s educational system – the element of inclusivity, particularly disability.

Accordingly, almost 20% of schools in rural areas have enrolled differently-abled children. With regards to the types of disabilities, the highest reported type was physical disability 41.4%, followed by behavioural disability, which was 12.1%, and multiple disabilities, which was estimated to be 11.8%. Furthermore, the report said that only 2.1% of surveyed government schools and 2% of surveyed private schools had ramps. Similarly, only 3.9% of surveyed government schools and 7% of surveyed private schools had disability-friendly toilets.

The present situation strongly points out that in order for schools to become more inclusive, there is a need to ensure a trained workforce, provide adequate disability-friendly facilities and support service.

There is a dire need to provide all basic facilities to children with disabilities both in urban and rural schools. Sadly, such basic faculties are also absent in the elite urban private schools of the country.

“The provision of basic facilities (ramps, special toilets and chairs) in schools is the constitutional right of differently-abled children. I urge media organisations to highlight this issue”, said Dr Kamal said.

Light at the end of the tunnel

While the report highlighted some harsh facts about the country’s poor educational system, it also shed light on some positive developments in the field. Tossing out an astonishing fact, it stated that in 2019 more people opted for public-sector education rather than private education. This is an achievement in itself and the government’s efforts have been lauded for it.

The report also found that teachers’ attendance in schools of rural areas have increased and the concept of ghost staff has become slightly unpopular.


49000 schools in sindh and only one person can not fix all the schools - Lead Pakistan

Provincial education Minister Saeed Ghani said there are 49,000 schools in Sindh and only one person cannot fix all the schools. Teachers, parents and students all need to play a role if we all come together, work for all schools can be improved in 6 months. He expressed these views while holding the provincial launch of Sindh Annual Education Statistics 2019 (ASER Pakistan-2019).
This event organized by Idara-e-Taleem-o-Aagahi (ITA). On the occasion, Secretary Education Sindh Khalid Haider Shah Shahzad Rai, leading singer, MQM organizing committee chairman Dr Farooq Sattar, PTI parlimentry leader in Sindh Assembly Firdous Shamim Naqvi, CEO of Idara-e-Taleem-o-Aagahi Dr. Bela Raza Jamil, Deputy Director, Waqas Hameed Bajwa, Shahnaz Wazir Ali and others were present.
Minister education said here is a lot of work that needs to be done to ensure that parents of children are with us and move forward to address the problems of schools in their own areas. We want to be the first to standardize schools. Improvement.
We have to work with the idea that school buildings will continue to be built, but we have to make it a top priority to improve the quality of education.
He further said that steps were being taken to ensure the attendance of teachers to improve the quality of education in schools and action would be taken against those who did not ensure the attendance of the teachers. Speaking on the annual report (ASER) compiled by the CEO of Idara-e-Taleem-o-Aagahi , Dr. Bela Raza Jamil said that there is a need to work on a revolutionary basis for the improvement of education at the government level, which is also going forward.



Significant shift of students from private schools to govt schools recorded - Dawn News

KARACHI: The provincial launch of the Annual Status of Education Report (Aser) Pakistan 2019 under the aegis of the Idara-i-Taleem-o-Agahi (ITA) was held at a local hotel here on Wednesday.

According to ITA CEO Baela Raza Jamil, there has been a record shift of students from private schools to government schools. “Enrolment choices at public and private facilities as recorded by Aser in the rural areas, from 2014 to 2019, present a clear shift in households opting for public-sector schools,” she said, while explaining that enrolment had increased from 70 per cent in 2014 to 77pc in 2019 with a commensurate decrease from 30pc to 23pc in private-sector share.

“This trend speaks volumes for persistent government efforts over the past few years to improve public-sector facilities, ensuring teachers’ presence and merit-based recruitment. This focus must remain front and centre to the education enterprise in Pakistan,” she said.

That said, she added that the learning levels at schools still break hearts. “Some 41 per cent children in grade five cannot read simple stories in Urdu or Sindhi,” she said. “More importantly, if we look at learning at grade eight or lower secondary, 14 per cent children are still unable to read a grade two level story in Urdu or Sindhi,” she said.

“This is unacceptable, amplifying the call for action to the fundamental challenge that enrolment or schooling does not mean learning,” she pointed out.

Responding to a question about his call for action, singer Shehzad Roy of Zindagi Trust said that it was also alarming to find in the report that 44pc children lacked comprehension.

“Why can’t they understand their lessons? Is it due to a lack of good schoolbooks?” He asked. He also said that the education department here needed to take basic baby steps instead of jumping into firefighting.

Khalid Haider, secretary, school education and literacy department, said that he had only just taken charge but Aser had provided him much data to help him plan his next steps. “The Sindh government is investing so much in education here which is not showing in the learning outcomes,” he said. “We will use Aser’s data to make our decisions,” he said.

Sindh’s Minister for Education Saeed Ghani, meanwhile, said that what was really needed was good intentions than money to fix education in the province therefore after getting the education portfolio he had decided to activate the staff at schools.

“I make surprise visits at schools during assembly time and because of that the staff has started showing up at schools. We also have a WhatsApp group of schools where I leave a message early to let everyone know I am watching them and then they, too, start posting their school pictures to show that they are all there. When the teachers come to school, the students will also come,” he pointed out.

A panel discussion regarding what was needed to improve the standards of education followed.

Published in Dawn, February 20th, 2020



(Jehan Pakistan) میں 49 ہزار اسکولوں کو ٹھیک نہیں کر سکتا - سعید غنی

(92 News) میں 49 ہزار اسکولوں کو ٹھیک نہیں کر سکتا - سعید غنی

ادارہ تعلیم و آگاہی کی تقریب میں ڈاکٹر بیلا جمیل، فاروق ستار، خالد حیدر شاہ، وقاص حمید باجوہ،وزیر علی،کا گروپ فوٹو - Roznama Jasarat


Roznama Ausaf ادارہ تعلیم و آگاہی کی جانب سے تعلیم کے سالانہ اعداد و شمار اثر پاکستان 2019 کی رپورٹ پیش کرنے کی تقریب کے موقع پر لیا گیا گروپ فوٹو

وزیرِ تعلیم سندھ سعید غنی، ڈاکٹر بیلا رضا جمیل، شہزاد رائے، خالد حیدر شاہ، وقاص حمید باجوہ، شہناز وزیر علی و دیگر کا ادارہ تعلیم و آگاہی کی جانب سے تعلیم کے سالانہ اعداد و شمار "اثر" پاکستان 2019 کی رپورٹ پیش کرنے کی تقریب کے   )وقع پر لیا گیا گروپ فوٹو




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