ISLAMABAD, Sep 7 (APP):Minister for Federal Education and Professional Training Shafqat Mahmood Friday said that Out Of School Children (OOSC) was one of the major challenges for the incumbent government and it will take it on top priority.
Addressing a Literacy Walk organized by National Commission for Human Development (NCHD) in connection with the International Literacy Day-started from Shaheed-e-Millat Secretariat to D-Choke on Jinnah Avenue, the minister lamented over the high number of out of school children across country.
The Literacy Walk was also attended by the Chairperson NCHD and Former Senator Razina Aalm Khan, UNESCO Representative to Pakistan Ms. Vibeke Jensen, and a large number of teachers, students belonging to community schools working under NCHD across the country.
The students and teachers were displayed play cards, banners containing of the message of rights of the free education.
We will make every effort to educate these 2.5 million out of school children; he said and remarked that all methodologies in this regard would be utilized to achieve the target.
Emphasizing the role of education in socio-economic development of the country, Shafqat Mahmood said the government would make any endeavor to achieve maximum literacy rate.
Lauding the role of NCHD in promotion of education especially in the rural areas, the minister vowed to provide all kind of support to the institution to achieve the literacy task.
Earlier, in her address Chairperson NCHD Razina Alam Khan said the day was observed all over the world to create public awareness about the significance of literacy for individuals, family and society as a whole.
The purpose of the walk is to mobilize youth, educationists and NGOs for the cause of literacy, she added. This walk is a demonstration showing the commitment of the government for the promotion of literacy and Non-formal Education and skill development which is the main task of NCHD, she further added.
Later, Talking to APP Razina Alam Khan informed that a symposium/seminar is being organized on 8th September (Saturday) to sensitize policy makers, intelligentsia and civil society organization about challenges of illiteracy and out of school children faced by the country, she informed.
In this symposium a thematic presentation on Literacy and skill development including documentary on rationale and benefits will be delivered to highlight importance and advantages of integrating income generation and life skill with literacy programme, she informed.
Furthermore, a panel discussion will be carried out for exchange of experiences among NGOs, GOs and INGOs to share information about good practices and successful initiatives of skill development by different service providers in the country, she said.
UNESCO Representative to Pakistan Ms. Vibeke Jensen speaking on the occasion urged the students and teachers that it is the time to send the message of education to your family and community.
UNESCO would provide every possible support to the institutions working for the promotion of education in Pakistan, she added.
She lauded the role of NCHD for the promotion of education through community schools system across the country.
UNESCO implements the “Support to national capacity building to realize girls’ right to education in Pakistan” programme to develop and strengthen local institutional and organizational capacities, she concluded.
It is pertinent to note that the themes of the current year are as follow: Right to Education, importance of Literacy for Individual Citizens and Society, Literacy and Empowerment of Women, Dismal State of Literacy in Pakistan and Need for Action, and literacy for peace and development.