After independence, efforts have been made to relate the education system to the needs and inspirations of the country. All Education Conference was held in 1947 as per directives of the founder of Pakistan Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah. He provided the basic guidelines for the future development of education that the education system should suit the intellect of our people, in connection with our history, culture and provides the highest sense of honor, integrity, responsibility, and selfless service to the nation. It should also provide scientific and technical knowledge to build up our economic life.
Various commissions were appointed which submitted their reports periodically. The 1959 Report of the Commission on National Education enjoys a superior position in the history of educational reforms. There were several other commissions and policy reports up to 1973. In 1973 the civilian democratic government came up with a 1973 constitution which provided that the state shall:
- Promote unity and observance of the Islamic moral standards.
- Promote with special care the educational and economic interests of backward areas.
- Remove illiteracy and provide free and compulsory secondary education within minimum possible period. Make technical and professional education generally available and higher education equally accessible to all on the basis of merit.
- Enable the people of different areas, through education, agriculture, training and industrial development, and other methods to participate fully in all form of national activities including employment in the services of Pakistan.
- Full participation of women in all the fields of national life.
The above mentioned goals were pursued by various policy documents announced by various governments who came into power from time to time.
Each policy stressed on:
- Islamic ideology and character building
- The universalization of primary education and promotion of literacy
- Science education
- Quality of education
- Reduction in inequalities of educational facilities.
Formal System of Education in Pakistan The education system of Pakistan falls into five levels. These are:
- Primary level
- Middle level
- Secondary level
- Intermediate level
- University level.
If we talk about schools, colleges and universities, they also fall in three categories. These are:
- Government schools
- Private schools
Talking about the government institutions first, they are in poor condition due to lack of attention and shortage of funds. Teachers are not given adequate salary. Private schools, on the other hand are doing much better job. They are paying their teachers well and are giving them necessary training for teaching. The only drawback of these private schools is that their fees are not affordable by everyone. Madaris are the third type of educational systems working in Pakistan. They are providing Islamic education to a number of students.
There are 21,402 registered madaris according to Registered Before The Promulgation of The Societies Registration (Second Amendment) Ordinance 2005. After 9/11 the reputation of these institutions is badly damaged and now they are not taken as a reliable source for providing religious education. In formal education system, there are a number of stages are; Pre Primary Schooling: Pre-primary education is functional and managed in schools throughout the country. Public schools provide pre-primary education as part of socialization process. The students attending pre-primary class are called “Kachi”.
National Education EFA (Education for All) Action Plan Policy, 1998-2010 provided recognition to “Kachi” class as alternate for early childhood education. According to National Education Policy, 1998-2010, the “Kachi” class was introduced as formal class in the primary schools. The age group for pre-primary is 3-5. Primary Schooling: This stage consists of five classes’ I-V and children of age 5-9 years are enrolled. According to Pakistan Integrated Household Survey (PIHS) 1998-99, the gross participation rate was 71 percent in 1999, for male it was 80 percent and for female it was 61 percent.
For urban female it was 92 and for rural it was 50 percent. The lowest participation rate observed for rural female in Sindh was 33 percent. The net enrollment rate was 42 percent, for urban male it was 47 percent and 37 percent for rural female. Middle Schooling: The middle schooling is of three years duration and consists of class VI, VII and VIII. The age group is 10-12 years. The participation rate at middle school was about 34 percent during 2000-2001. Males were 36 percent and females were 33 percent. High Schooling: The high school students stay for two years in class IX and X.
The Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education conducts the examination. A certificate of secondary school is awarded to the successful candidates. The participation rate at high school was about 22 percent in 2000-2001 of which, 24 percent were males and 20 percent were females. Vocational Education (VE) is normally offered in high schooling. There are varieties of professions offered to the students and after completion of the courses they get jobs as carpenters, mechanics, masons ,welders, electrician, refrigeration and similar other professions. There are 498 vocational institutions with an enrollment of about 88000 in 2001-2002.
Higher Secondary Education: The higher secondary stage also called the “Intermediate Stage” is considered a part of college education. Higher Secondary Education consists of classes XI and XII. During two years stay a student at the age of 16 years can opt for General education, Professional education and Technical education. The Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education (BISE) conducts the examination and awards a Certificate of Higher Secondary School Education (HSSC). According to 1979 Education Policy, all schools were to be upgraded to higher Secondary Schools. Higher Education:
To obtain a degree, 4 years of higher education after 10 years of primary and secondary schooling is required. Students who pass their first degree stage are awarded a Bachelor’s degree in arts or science, typically at the age of 19 years. In order to complete an Honors Course at Bachelor’s degree level an additional one year’s study is required. Further, a two years course is required for Master’s degrees who have completed two years Bachelors’ degree. A doctoral degree requires normally 3 years of study after the completion of a master’s degree course. Higher Education Commission (HEC)
Pakistani authorities are much concerned about the development of Higher Education system and particularly about improving the quality of Higher Education. To help achieve their ambitions, The Higher Education Commission (HEC) which was formerly known as the University Grant Commission (UGC) is the primary regulator of Higher Education in Pakistan. In Pakistan, up till 2002, Universities were recognized by the University Grants Commission (UGC) which used to draw its powers from The University Grants Commission Act, 1974. The Act was repealed in 2002 by the Higher Education Commission Ordinance 2002.
The responsibilities of Higher Education Commission of Pakistan (HEC) are,
- Higher Education Policy
- Quality Assurance
- Degree Recognition
- Development of new institutions and strengthening of existing institutions in Pakistan.
It also facilitated the development of higher educational system in Pakistan. Its main objective was to upgrade universities in Pakistan to be centers of education, research and development. The Higher Education Commission (HEC) has played a leading role towards building a knowledge based economy in Pakistan by providing hundreds of doctoral scholarships for education abroad every year.
Dr. Javaid Laghari is the appointed Higher Education Commission’s (HEC) Chairman. Higher Education Commission’s (HEC) autonomous status was revoked and it was brought under the control of the Ministry of Professional and Technical Training in June 2012. But the Honorable Sindh High Court suspended on 18-07-2012 the Notification dated 08-06-2012 in which the HEC was placed under the patronage of Ministry of Professional and Technical Training. Higher Education Commission (HEC) has been given a broad mandate to develop and improve higher education and research.
Good quality in higher education is an essential part of it. Therefore the establishment of Quality Assurance and Accreditation System is one of the Commission’s many important tasks. In addition to the establishment of a Quality Assurance System, many of the other tasks that HEC has contributed to the development of quality in higher education in the country; for example, the standardization of 4 year undergraduate programs and programs for curriculum development where HEC is responsible for supervising curriculum revision work at all levels in higher ducation. For faculty development, considerable emphasis is placed on developing a strong base of faculty members holding PhDs. This involves development of scholarship programs for students to attain PhD degrees both in Pakistan and abroad. Refresher Courses mainly for young teachers have been started. These courses are of three months’ duration and cover teaching and learning skills. Programs for hiring foreign academics to teach and do research in the country are also of great importance for the development of quality in education. Quality Assurance Program
According to information from HEC’s website, the mission of the Quality Assurance Program is to provide an integrated quality and assurance management service for higher learning. The objectives of program are:
- To meet the challenges of global compatibility in higher education
- To improve the standards of higher learning
- To analyze the gaps in the context of quality of higher education in Pakistan
- To develop a practical and sustainable mechanism of quality assurance in the higher education of the country.
- To improve the standards of higher learning.
An advisor of Quality Assurance in HEC is responsible for launching the Quality Assurance Program. Quality Assurance Committee Under the Quality Assurance Program, a Quality Assurance Committee was established in 2003. The committee is consisted of Vice Chancellors from different universities with the aim of having representation from smaller and medium universities and universities for women and to ensure geographical equality. The Committee has an extensive mandate to ensure the evaluation, improvement and promotion of higher education.
We should spend money for creating job opportunities for them in Pakistan so they can serve their services and the money which Pakistan have spend on them can get it back in this form. They should do the research that they have given the scholarships to these numbers of people and now we need to check the job opportunity for them and as soon as they complete their education HEC place them to that area till the fulfillment of the contract. If HEC will not consider these issues and will not solve them on time this can be big loss for them as well as for the Pakistan.