Sardar Shah says province has its own textbook board
Sindh Education Minister Sardar Shah has rejected the federal government’s decision to bring a uniform education system across the country.
“Decisions over the education policy fall under the provincial government,” he said. “We have our own textbook board and a syllabus committee.”
Students of the Science group can have a syllabus similar to that announced by the federal board, but the syllabus of other subjects such as Arts and Commerce will be decided by the province, Shah decided.
Sindh Information Minister Saeed Ghani clarified that Sindh does not oppose teaching Quran in schools. “In Sindh, the Quran is completed in the eighth grade, while you wish that it should be completed in the fifth grade,” he tweeted.
On Monday, Prime Minister Imran Khan launched the Single National Curriculum in a ceremony in Islamabad. Education ministers of all provinces attended it except Shah.
The PM said that he has had a vision for the last 25 years to bring a core curriculum for the whole country. “People used to tell me that it is not possible since there was no incentive to do this. [This was] because those who were in power, who had to make decisions, their children were studying in institutions where there was English medium education,” he remarked.
“All the jobs were for the English medium education, all the privileges are for them in the society,” the premier said. It had become a status symbol, he added.
On June 25 last year, Prime Minister Imran Khan said that his government is going to implement a uniform education system from March 2021. While speaking on the floor of the National Assembly, he said the 2.5 million students at religious seminaries would be brought into the mainstream.
The new syllabus will first be introduced on the primary level (nursery to grade five) in the 2021 session.
The government decided to execute the plan in phases. The first step is to introduce the new syllabus on the primary level (nursery to grade five) in the 2021 session. The new course will then be taught on secondary levels and above in 2022.
Punjab will begin implementing the Single National Curriculum from the educational year 2021-2022. A notification by the Punjab Curriculum and Textbook Board, issued on Monday, read that the new curriculum will be taught to classes I to V.
“SNC for grades Pre I – V and Model Textbooks of Education Reforms and Textbook Development Wing, Schools Education Department developed by the Federal Government for implementation in all streams of education (Public, Private and Deeni Madaris) in Punjab for the forthcoming academic session 2021-22 and onwards.”
The decision was approved by Punjab Chief Minister Usman Buzdar earlier in December during a meeting of the provincial cabinet. According to the government, the system will help eliminate the rote learning system and hone the skills of the students.