Monday, 18 November 2013

Common Education System in Pakistan

We see in Pakistan various streams of educational institutions up to secondary education level, all imparting various syllabi at various levels.   As education system of a nation formats what should be the nation’s outlook towards life, national security and integrity demand one education system in a state.

In Pakistan we have various streams of education institutions up to secondary education level; these institutions include government institutions, private institutions, and religious institutions which impart non-religious education as well. Sparring a few, government institutions are lagging behind most of the private institutions; similarly most of the religious institutions are lagging behind the government institutions in non-religious education. In the way to adopting the same/one education syllabus, obviously government would not like to pull the better performing private institutions to the level of poorly performing government institutions.  In other words, in order to net government and private educational institutions into the same/one syllabus, government would require lot of financial resources, on the one hand, to train government institutions’ teaching staff to enhance their capacity and bring them at par with higher quality private institutions, and, on the other hand, to train religious institutions’ teaching staff to enable them to impart non-religious education, keeping with the minimum required standard. It means venture of adopting the same/one syllabus in government and private institutions may not be completed overnight; it would take many years before giving desired results. But this venture may be made result oriented in a shorter period of two to four years, if it is divided into two phases. In the first phase, a core syllabus (a part of complete syllabus) may be devised which may be taught by all government and private institutions including religious institutions imparting non-religious education; in addition to the core syllabus, education institutions may be allowed to teach extra syllabus of which they have enough capability in terms of financial and human resources.  But the extra syllabus should be in line with broader outline designed for preparation of complete syllabus which would be adopted by the government in the second phase. In the first phase, the Government may focus on providing financial and human resources relating to the core syllabus only. In the second phase, the government may focus on the extra syllabus in terms of providing financial and human resources in order to adopt the same/one  syllabus.

It may be appreciated that complete same syllabus may not be adopted for the government and religious institutions imparting non-religious education. The reason is obvious; the religious institutions are imparting education for the purpose/objectives different from those of non-religious educational institutions. However these two different streams of educational institutions may be harmonized by making Quranic Studies an essential part of core syllabus which would be taught by both religious and non-religious institutions (as stated above).

It may also be appreciated that by adopting same syllabus for educational institutions, we may also attempt to reduce the severity of extremism, if we are able to design contents of core syllabus according to belief set-ups of various/all Muslim groups; but, of course, it may be done only with the help  of scholars from all sects involved.

We may conclude that proposed venture of adopting same/one syllabus for all educational institutions up to secondary education level may harmonize educational institutions which may, in return, propagate uniform outlook towards life and resultantly strengthen national security and integrity.

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