KARACHI: Educationists, legislators, political activists, academia and writers on Saturday showed determination to make functional all 7,621 schools closed in the Sindh province.
Speaking at All Parties Conference (APC) called by Sindh Community Foundation (SCF) in collaboration with Alif Ailaan they realised the responsibility of entire Sindhi society and vowed to ensure enrollment of 6 million children, who reportedly have been out of schools through a mass campaign.
The event attracted community activists, youth, civil society representatives and campaigners hailing from Tando Mohammed Khan, Mirpurkhas, Tando Allahyar, Matiari, Jamshoro and Hyderabad districts to take part in the move and showed strength on their part to promote education in the province.
PML-F MPA Mahtab Akbar Rashdi, PPP MPA Faqirdad Khoso, JSQM leader Asif Baladi, STP Chairman Dr Qadir Magsi, Hussain Bakhsh Thebo advocate, SUP leader Dr Dodo Maheri, Mukhtiar Abbasi of Awami Jamhori Party (AJP), Ashraf Lakho of Qaumi Awami Party (QAP), Punhal Sario of Sindhi Hari Porhiat Council, Mustafa Baloch of Strengthening Participatory Organisation (SPO), Jami Chandio of Center for Peace and Civil Society (CPCS), writer Zulfiqar Halepoto, Mushtaq Mirani, Zahida Detho and Dr Sahad Dhamrah of national youth assembly portrayed the alarming situation of the education and gave their valuable suggestions to improve it.
Murtaza Solangi of Alif Ailaan, Javed Soz Halai executive director Sindh Community Foundation, Nisar Brohi and senior journalist Jaffar Memon gave their inputs.
They said the provincial government should ensure implementation of the law to have free education, considering right of every child and design business rules in the Assembly and make it accessible to common people. They asked to provide missing facilities to all 30,000 schools in different areas. It was an unanimous understanding of all the speakers all the children should be enrolled in schools without discrimination and if needed parents should be convinced.
Mahtab Akbar Rashdi appealed to the participants to be watchful and ensure 100 percent enrollment in schools, located in different areas. She said all the political parties’ legislators have signed this commitment presented by Alif Ailaan during these gatherings. But question is that what methods will be adopted to make it implementable.
“It is not only the responsibility of government or legislators, but entire society should play their role to make sure 100 percent enrollment,” she said. The fact sheet presented by different speakers with data is a mirror, which hurt all of us, she added.
“When I was a child, I saw the commitment of my elders, who used to teach in schools, traveling long distance daily to reach there. But the same spirit is missing now. I see these youths who have come here to learn but we should see what lesson they will get through these speeches,” she said. The youth now pass their examination through unfair means, which shows how young cadre is enemy of the education who prefer to adopt unfair means instead of to meet standards.
“Love mother tongue and ensure teaching to your children in mother tongue, as it is the only way out to save your language. Be careful about your own children and take step ahead for promoting education and come out for the greater cause. Change your attitude and stop asking questions. Make accountability within yourself. Come out of the backwardness and see reality on ground, she asked young people.
She asked the participants to adopt slogan ‘each one should teach one’ and move to your neighborhood to save education. Take part with honesty, stop cheating, make noise and force teachers to come to teach you. And in case of any violation tell the authorities why it happens to you.
Murtaza Solangi presented fact sheet to understand the status of education in the province. He said out of total 25 million children in the country around 6.1 million children, including 3.4 million girls of school age were out of schools in Sindh province.
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