Shift in curriculum lingo may create more societal cataloging

: Photo By News Lens Pakistan / Matiullah Achakzai
Girls are busy in reading the book during their class at Government girls Model High School: Photo By News Lens Pakistan / Matiullah Achakzai

Lahore: Punjab government is planning on changing the language of schools’ curriculum from English to Urdu. “Education in national language will be a great help to enhance patriotism,” said Rana Mashood, Punjab Minister for Education.

Many educators disagree with government’s policy of shifting course language. According to them, government must take steps to help next generations to compete with the world, and English is an essential language to be acquainted with.

Mashood while talking to News Lens Pakistan said, “Some countries have entire syllabus in national language since it is easy for students to learn in their own dialect.” He further said, “We plan to execute this procedure in the present year. However, prior to its implementation government wants to have productive debates on assembly floor as well as in media.”

If this policy gets implemented, all subjects including science will be in Urdu. Mashood said, “Subjects in English language create great difficulty for students as they have little exposure to it.”

The figures of Punjab Education Department disclose that public schools accommodate sixty to seventy percent of students, generally belonging to the poor and under privileged segment of the society.

Former Punjab Minister for Education Mian Imran Masood belittles government plans while talking to News Lens Pakistan. “This strategy is anti-knowledge and will be a great foundation of creating more social gaps amid rich and the poor rather than promoting nationalism,” Masood said. “Our government changed the curriculum at all levels in 2008 to give every child an opportunity to compete with the students of private English medium schools.”

Senator Aitzaz Ahsan shows divergence with this policy of promoting nationalism. “Government must focus on giving people access to clean drinking water, basic health facility, enough food and employment,” he said while talking to News Lens Pakistan. “It should be the principal apprehension of the government thus to provide them the basic necessities rather than worrying about implementing Urdu lingo in schools”, he added.

Former Dean Faculty of Education University of the Punjab Dr. Muhammad Iqbal says that rulers have always tried to carry policies which support further cataloging in society as this facilitates them to grasp supremacy in their hands. “Education is a stumpy grade in public schools but it has never been a substance of concern for governments to advance educational echelon. Six thousand public schools of Punjab only got shut down in the last five years,” Iqbal told News Lens Pakistan.

Punjab government has proclaimed more than Rs 200 billion to augment educational infrastructure but the certainty is that only 6.68 percent of the total budget is being spent on this sector, Dr. Muhammad Iqbal further stated.

According to Punjab Education Department data 10 million students are enrolled in more than fifty eight thousand schools while fifty thousand teaching facilities are still vacant. “This illustrates government’s artificiality towards the future of the country,” Rana Liaqat, additional secretary general Punjab Teachers Union stated in an interview with News Lens Pakistan.

“Rather than filling out vacant seats of teachers, government is scheduling to employ a policy which will create unjust in the masses,” Liaqat said.

Dr. Shahid Siddique, professor at Lahore School of Economics takes this policy as an intended endeavor to eradicate seventy percent inhabitants from antagonism. “Government must strive for implementing this policy on private schools as well if it really thinks of jingoism. Identical opportunities of growth should be available to the deprived too.” Siddique opined that ruling class wanted to grab each possibility from those who had the aptitude to contend.

Opposition leader Punjab Mian Mehmood Ur Rashid also criticized this sketch while talking to News Lens Pakistan. Rashid said, “We will illustrate sturdy resistance if this bill comes on floor of the assembly. We deem it unrealistic advancement. Government should try to resolve existing troubles rather than introducing such imprudent plans.”



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