Saeed Ghani – Sindh Minister for Education, Labor, and Human Resources – has finally ended the silence and surprised the students of class one to eight with the good news that the education department cannot risk reopening educational institutions by June 1 or June 15, regardless of the pressures of private school associations.
He said – in clear words – that they (students of class 1 to 8) would be promoted to the next level without taking exams.
“Yes, students of classes one to eight can be promoted to the next level on the basis of their last year’s performance and results, but there, too, it won’t be right to promote students who just barely passed last year. We think it would be good to make some students who are very weak in certain subjects take their exams in those particular subjects. But this decision we leave to the discretion of the schools,” he said.
The air of doubts prevailed for the last several days, as nothing was decided regarding education, like reopening of schools, fees, examinations, etc.
The education minister said that the announcement made by Federal Minister for Education Shafqat Mahmood -regarding the closure of schools – would be extended till July 15.
And for grade 9, 10, 11, and 12, he said, “As for classes nine, 10, 11 and 12, they come under the various boards, which have their own rules. And changing those rules will require making amendments to their ordinances. We have called all the respective board chairmen and the secretary school and secretary colleges to review the issues that we face in making things work there and also to come up with their suggestions and solutions.”
Answering a question about school fees, he said that the number of private schools and teachers are in hundreds of thousands, he continued, “We have told all schools to pay their staff their salaries in full, and this many of them did even after giving parents relief of 20 percent monthly in school fees. But one must also understand that the schools need fees to pay their teachers and staff. It won’t help anyone if the schools start throwing out students over non-payment of fees and firing teachers too because they are unable to pay them their salaries. Then the students will be the ultimate losers.”