By Taj Nabi Khan
ISLAMABAD, Dec 20 (APP): The dilapidated buildings of government schools and colleges in the federal capital and lack of basic facilities in them such as toilets, playgrounds, transport, clean drinking water and trained teachers often force the parents to get enroll their children in private educational institutions.
However, it is almost impossible for the salaried class and low income people to afford the rising fees structures and expenses of these private schools and colleges.
The parents of students had a number of times urged the government to take prompt measures on war-footing basis to address the issue of government educational institutions, particularly in the suburbs of the capital for ensuring a better and prosper future to their children and country at large.
In order to tackle the widespread concern of the public, the government has unveiled its plans on Friday (Dec 11) to make the schools and colleges in federal capital and in its suburbs a role model for the rest of the country.
It was decided to renovate the buildings of 422 government schools and colleges besides improving teacher training for ensuring standard of education.
The prime minister launched the programme on the outskirts of the capital where he announced the up-gradation of Government Model School Punjgran, Chak Shahzad to college status.
According to the programme, more than 440 schools and colleges will be benefitted during the next six months.
The schools would be provided new science and IT laboratories, libraries, a fleet of 200 extra buses, new buildings, clean drinking water and sports grounds.
Talking to APP, Assitant Professor Shujat of Islamabad Model College said, “I hope its implementation would bring a remarkable improvement in sub-urban schools which are in extremely bad shape.”
The plans were also welcomed by a number of school teachers and lecturers of the federal capital.
The programme includes refresher courses for teachers and foreign scholarships for the most promising young teachers.
The Prime Minister later told teachers and students of Government Model School Punjgran that his government would provide maximum possible funds to offer children
and students quality education.
“I want to see all these schools and colleges equipped with state-of-the-art facilities. I want to see each and every kid in the capital territory enrolled in school,” he said.
He said a computerized system would be introduced to monitor all educational institutions in the federal capital, while bio-metric systems would ensure attendance and punctuality of the teaching staff. The upgrade system would also enable the parents to keep in touch with schools through email and SMS.
Muhammad Shafique, father of school-going-children in Sohan said, “Education is the only way forward to prepare the youth to cope with the challenges of the contemporary world.”
Reforms in education sector through improved curriculum, teachers’ training and facilities are need of the hour, he added.
Shaukat Dab, a teacher at Islamabad Model School F/8-3 said, “Quality education can be imparted to the students only if teachers remain satisfied with their jobs while performing their duties.”
For encouraging the environments of competition, he urged the government to allocate some funds for offering incentives and best teacher awards on outstanding performance of the teachers.
Shaukat said the infrastructural reforms of the government are appreciable.
However, the focus should be diverted towards educational reforms such as students and cultural exchange programs, equipping classrooms with multimedia and other facilities, and scholarships for the most bright students, he added.