Swinging Education System in Pakistan

Swinging Education System in PakistanSwinging Education System in Pakistan

Pakistan has traveled a distance of seventy five years since independence. The problems and crises that the country faced politically during this period have been deeply recorded in our political history. The result of this long distance is today’s uncertain conditions.
Swinging Education System in Pakistan
In the last few years, the decline of state institutions in the country, the more or less dissolution of governance, the growth of disorder and lawlessness, the increasing economic problems, and the widespread despair of the people have highlighted so many questions regarding the future that If you think about it, the mind goes on suffering from many fears in the distance.

If our performance in various spheres of life is not very proud, the situation is not much different in the field of education. The large number of ‘brain drain’ is happening from the country, and the essence is flying from the country, except for a few counting institutions, other educational institutions of the country are rapidly becoming average or even below average level institutions.
Swinging Education System in Pakistan
Yes, all these trends are manifestations of this decline. In the past seventy-five years, the educational landscape of Pakistan has certainly seen an extraordinary growth in quantitative terms.

The number of educational institutions we had here in 1950 is far more than today. But if we look carefully, in view of the increase in the country’s population and the country’s needs, the quantitative development in the education sector has not been as much as it should have been.

Then, if we look at the quality apart from the quantity aspect, the situation looks even sadder. Pakistan’s education system has been productive only to a limited extent and for a certain section but its benefits have proved to be negligible from the point of view of other sections and especially the general public. Below is a brief overview of 75 years of education.
Swinging Education System in Pakistan
According to the map that was drawn with regard to Pakistan before the partition of India, the establishment of a welfare society in this country, desired by the Muslims of the subcontinent, was envisaged.

The various aspects of this welfare society were presented to the general public by the leaders of Tehreek-e-Pakistan with great repetition and loudness. In this context, references to the golden periods of Muslim history were also repeatedly given to convince the Indian Muslims in which direction Pakistan will move forward and that there will be an era of civil justice.

During the Pakistan Movement, the topic of Muslim education was also a part of the political dialogue. One of the reasons for the backwardness of Muslims was rightly declared to be the backwardness of their education, while regarding the promised kingdom, the same thought was made that education will be the basic right of every citizen.
Most of Quaid-e-Azam and his companions were themselves deaf to modern education; even most of the women in this leadership were also well-educated.
Swinging Education System in Pakistan
Then most of them had acquired knowledge either from educational institutions in Europe, or from Aligarh College, Jamia Millia (Delhi), St. Stephen’s College in India, as well as well-known colleges and institutions in Bengal, Punjab, Sindh and the border. I was educated.

However, this aspect of our Pakistan movement seems a bit disappointing that before independence, Muslim League could not do more homework regarding Pakistan. What will be the economic system of the new state, what will be the shape of its constitutional structure, what strategy will be adopted for the promotion of education here, unfortunately, all these issues could not get much attention of the Muslim League.

Perhaps one of the reasons for this is the rapid turn of events and the crisis of conditions that engulfed the whole of India a few years before the partition of India. But it is also a fact that the Congress had already formulated some concrete work and basic policies keeping in view the scenario after the departure of the British.
Swinging Education System in Pakistan
The work of the Muslim League in this regard, if any, was of a very rudimentary nature, for example, we know from the history books that a few people were given the responsibility of thinking and thinking about education, but no such testimony is available to us. It has not come forward which proves that there was any significant progress in this direction.

Perhaps this is the reason that immediately after the establishment of Pakistan, there is an attitude of realizing the need to adopt a strategy in the field of education as a matter of urgency. Therefore, in November 1947, a national conference was organized on the subject of education, in which the education leaders of the country participated. The message that Quaid-e-Azam sent on this occasion was a very good manifestation of his thinking.
Swinging Education System in Pakistan
In this message, he said: ‘If we want to make real, rapid and meaningful progress, we need to align our educational policy and program with the genius of our people and its history and culture. Compatibility has to be arranged.

Along with this, we have to keep in mind the modern requirements and the wider developments that are emerging in the world. It will be important for us to mobilize our people and emphasize the character building of our future generations.
Swinging Education System in Pakistan
In short, we have to rebuild the character of the future generations, which means that we should instill in them a sense of pride, dignity, a sense of selfless service to the nation and a sense of responsibility.

This message of Quaid-i-Azam was the spokesman of his ideal that he had in view of Pakistan. The said conference was very active and formed several groups and started the work of institution building for all-round promotion of education. As a result of the efforts of these institutions, in 1952, the Ministry of Education created a six-year educational plan.
Swinging Education System in Pakistan
After these initial efforts, there has been a succession of educational policies in Pakistan at different times and there has hardly been a central and provincial government which has not come up with a major education plan with much fanfare.

So sometimes the ‘New Light Scheme’ was promoted, sometimes the slogan of ‘Ready Punjab’ was raised, sometimes ‘Education for all’ was raised and sometimes the ‘Punjab Youth Policy’ was promoted. Around nine educational policies have been introduced in the country since independence.
Swinging Education System in Pakistan
The Ninth Policy in its revised form in August. It was released in September 2009. Among the policies introduced at different periods, four policies are more notable because either they were prepared with great fanfare or they had a relatively large impact on the educational environment. Among them, the first policy came to the fore after Ayub Khan’s martial law in 1958, which was prepared on the basis of the Sharif Commission report.

The second policy came to the fore during the regime of General Yahya Khan in the name of Air Marshal Noor Khan’s education policy. The third policy was introduced during the Awami regime of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto while the fourth policy was introduced during the time of General Ziaul Haq.
Swinging Education System in Pakistan
During the regime of General Musharraf, two or three projects were announced in the field of education. Looking back at all these previous policies and plans of Pakistan, they all seem to have an element of grandiose visions, extravagant expectations and a certain amount of romanticism. Some of these policies or parts of them were duplicates of other policies while some policies had individual characteristics.

In Ayub Khan’s educational policy, the thinking of experts from Harvard Group of America can be seen significantly. On the contrary, Bhutto sahib’s education policy was basically a manifestation of the thought of a populist government whose aim was to bring out the oppressed sections of the society from their backwardness, but the ability to fulfill the requirements of this good was limited by the state structure of the time

General Zia-ul-Haq tried to adapt the society according to his interpretation of Islam through his educational policy. During his time, the curriculum was molded into a specific religious framework which was not compatible with the religious attitudes prevailing at the public level in Pakistan. During the time of Zia-ul-Haq, an extremism was promoted in the country in the name of Jihad, which later played a key role in the chaos and intolerance of the society.
Swinging Education System in Pakistan
General Pervez Musharraf’s regime was apparently different from Zia-ul-Haq’s trend of religious extremism and General Musharraf was the bearer of ‘moderate enlightenment’, but his ‘moderate enlightenment’ was neither at the level of society nor education. It could become a manifestation of a real and positive change in the field of His slogan remained just a slogan. While the non-moderate and intolerant attitudes of the society continued to increase.

What is the educational scenario of Pakistan today despite the uneven educational journey of seventy-five years and the loud rhetoric of various governments regarding reforms? The current situation is that Pakistan, which has a population of more than 22 million, has 60% of its population under 30 years of age. According to an analysis, people under 20 years of age in Pakistan are equal to half of the population. In other words, more than eleven million people in Pakistan are under the age of twenty.

According to official statistics, the literacy rate in the country is 62.8 percent (Economic Survey of Pakistan, 2021-22), while unofficial estimates show it at forty to forty-five percent. At the time of the establishment of Pakistan, our literacy rate was thirteen percent, which has reached 62.8 percent in seventy-five years. If we look at this rate of increase in literacy rate, it can be estimated that how many more years will it take for the country to reach 100% literacy rate.
Swinging Education System in Pakistan
According to the Economic Survey of Pakistan 2021-22, Pakistan is spending only 1.77% of its GDP on education. With the expenditure on education at this rate, it is impossible that he will be able to achieve the goal of universal primary education in the near future, which he has been hinting at and which has been done by him at the global level. There is also a promise.

In fact, in 1999, along with other countries of the world, Pakistan had signed the document according to which it had to achieve the goal of complete primary education by 2015, but since then, various governments have done nothing in this direction except verbal collection. Can’t

In terms of literacy rate, so many high dreams have been seen and shown to the nation that one wonders if common sense is completely missing among us. For example, in 2005, it was said that complete literacy will be achieved in the country by 2015. By 2006-7, it was said that by 2015 we would be able to achieve the target of 86%. The Musharraf-era National Education Policy further reduced these numbers by one percent.
Swinging Education System in Pakistan
Currently, while the country’s literacy rate is 62.8% and we have achieved this percentage in seventy-five years, one can imagine how far the goal of complete literacy is for us. These are some statistics of literacy rate. It should also be clear that there is a clear difference between literacy and education and then between education and knowledge.

It is not necessary that every literate person is educated and also it is not necessary that every educated person is really a possessor of knowledge and also a scholar. Because it is enough to have a degree to be considered educated.

The state of educational institutions is dependent on the deplorable statistics of literacy rate and education. Schools in most rural areas of the country and also in many urban areas do not have adequate number of classrooms, playgrounds or science laboratories. The number of such institutions is also not less where there are no toilets. Whereas clean drinking water is not available in a large number of government schools.

The above details can only be considered as a glimpse of the backward educational situation of Pakistan. The more one looks deeper into this subject, the more the details of this backwardness come into view. The question is what are the main causes of this situation? At least five main reasons can be identified in this regard.

First and foremost is the identity of the Pakistani state itself. In the beginning, we pointed to the ideals of Quaid-e-Azam and Tehreek-e-Pakistan, for the achievement of which Pakistan was established. These ideals were the goals of a welfare state and a welfare state is one whose policies and developments are directed towards the welfare of the people.

Unfortunately, instead of keeping this goal in mind, Pakistan became a state structure which in its identity and role was that of a national security state. The National Security State considers merely increasing its defense capabilities and increasing the number and capability of its forces as the only guarantee of the country’s security, even if it has to pay the price in the form of backwardness, ignorance and poverty of the people.

The second major problem after the marginal status of education in national priorities is the internal contradictions of the education system itself. These contradictions are also of many kinds. The first contradiction of the education sector is the existence of multiple education systems in the country at the same time. Currently, four types of educational institutions are functioning in the country.

One type of institution is that which consists of elite schools. These include private sector schools, many of which have now spread across the country in the form of a chain.

The quality of these elite schools is at par with that of European countries and their fees are so high that only the elite can afford it. Children studying in these schools generally go abroad for higher education.

The other type of schools are English-medium ordinary schools, where better facilities, better teachers and textbooks are available than Urdu-medium schools. The environment here can’t compete with the elite schools but here too the children are prepared for ‘O level and A’ level and their proficiency in English is much higher than children in Urdu medium or public sector schools. The third types of schools are government or public sector schools.

The condition of these schools is worst. There are no proper buildings and rooms, no playgrounds, no proper libraries and laboratories. Many of these schools do not even have chairs to sit on. Here the number of students in a class is more than capacity. The quality of teachers is also not high. Teaching methods here are also very traditional.

In short, it can be said that government schools do not have an educational environment that will make children interested in learning and will help in developing their heartfelt attachment to school.

A fourth type of educational institutions is that which consists of religious schools. Religious madrasahs are run under the management of different Masalaks and now all these madrasas have been united in different federations.

The admission of a large number of children in them indicates the unusual presence of poverty in Pakistani society. Poor parents, especially those from rural areas, lack the means to raise their children and enroll them in religious schools where they are responsible for their accommodation, food, clothing and copies of books.

In other words, the work that was supposed to be done by the state is being done by the religious schools. It is also worth mentioning here that the vast majority of religious schools are associated with one or the other sect. According to the Directorate General of Religious Education, out of thirty-five thousand madrasas, twenty-five thousand madrasas are associated with different religious boards. come out

From the very beginning, they are made to have reservations about other Masalaks and the intolerance found within the society comes to the fore in their case even deeper and reinforced by specific religious credentials. Students of religious madrasas live in full-time residential institutions, so their lifestyle is also shaped in a certain way. They then feel a little alienated in the wider society and the society is reluctant to absorb them.

Another major contrast in the education sector is the urban-rural divide. Rural areas are more backward and lack infrastructure than urban areas. It has a direct impact on various sectors of rural society. The education sector is also not affected by it. For example, school facilities in rural areas are much less than those in urban areas

According to the Annual Status of Education (ASER) report for 2021, 81% of children between 6 to 16 years of age in rural areas are registered in schools, while 19% of children in this age group are not registered in schools. As far as facilities are concerned, according to the report, 70 percent of public primary schools had toilet facilities in 2021. Among private primary schools, 71 percent of schools had toilet facilities in 2021.

Another major demonstration of the discrepancy in the field of education comes from gender statistics. Therefore, compared to boys, girls are lagging behind in overall education race due to lack of facilities and general social situation. Therefore, according to the Labor Force Survey of 2020-21, the literacy rate of women is only 69.7% compared to 82.2% literacy rate of men in urban areas. Similarly, in rural areas, the female literacy rate is only 40.4% compared to 67.1% male literacy rate.

In rural areas, where schools are far from villages, it is almost impossible for girls to go to school. Similarly, poverty-stricken parents prefer boys’ education over girls’ education, but it is also noteworthy that the proportion of girls in higher education compared to primary and secondary, especially in certain subjects, is higher than that of boys. More is better. A more obvious demonstration of this situation is seen in universities and medical institutions.

The paradox of the education sector is also seen in the disproportion of schools and institutions of higher learning. An integrated education system is in principle based on a clear ratio between schools and institutions above them, but in the last twenty-five years we have shown extraordinary enthusiasm in the establishment of institutions of higher education, while primary education institutions have been neglected in comparison.

A demonstration of this can be seen in the form of universities that are being built rapidly. In 1992-93, there were 27 universities across the country, which increased to 135 in 2010-11. Currently, the number of universities in the country is 218. The ratio of increase in schools is much lower than the increase in universities.

This disproportional growth of schools and universities shows that our educationists and governments have been of the same opinion that the educational development of the country lies in the increase in the number of higher education institutions.

They have been unable to see that primary and secondary education cannot be made universal and their quality cannot be improved as a result of the development of higher education. This is the reason why the work which is the main purpose of universities is not being done properly in our universities.

That is, our universities are very behind in the field of research. They can be termed as educational institutions at most. Obviously, teaching and research are two different things. We are clearly ignoring research
Swinging Education System in Pakistan
Transferred to provinces of education:

After the eighteenth constitutional amendment in 2010, the education department has been transferred to the provinces. This is a major fundamental decision which was taken in view of the demands and requirements of provincial autonomy. Apparently, this is not the same because in many countries of the world where there is a federal system of government, education comes under the jurisdiction of the provinces.

In undivided India before the creation of Pakistan, the Government of India Act 1935 also made education the responsibility of the provinces. At present, in India, America and many other federal countries, education is largely under the purview of the provinces. After independence in Pakistan, however, education was made a central subject.

Although constitutionally it was included in the common list in the 1973 constitution, but because the center had control over the overall planning in the country, education also went completely under the authority of the center. Now that education has been devolved to the provinces and the Union Ministry of Education has been abolished along with sixteen other Union ministries, a huge challenge has arisen for the provinces.

They have been seeking power and resources for years, now these two things have become available to them, so their trial has also begun.

How the provinces run the education sector, whether their performance is better than the performance of the Central Ministry of Education, which itself was a question mark, will be clear in the coming months and years.

The inconsistencies in the education sector, mentioned above, will now have to be resolved by the provinces. How successful are they in doing so? This will also be clear in the future.

Pakistan’s educational journey of seventy-five years cannot be called completely futile, because although the literacy rate and the spread of education have increased, it is not satisfactory either. In the same period, other countries of the world have made extraordinary progress.

Sri Lanka’s literacy rate is above 97%. South Korea, Malaysia, Singapore and many other countries have gone far in the field of education.

But Pakistan has not been able to achieve any significant position due to not giving proper place to education in its overall national priorities and due to various contradictions found in the education sector. Therefore, it will not be out of place to say that we have made some educational journey, but it has not become a means of victory for our nation and country as a whole. Maybe we can make up for it in the future.

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