ILM Policy Dialogue on Education Focusing Out of School Children.

The National Assembly of Pakistan under the able leadership of Honourable Speaker, National Assembly of Pakistan, Mr Asad Qaiser organized DIALOGUE ON ADDRESSING ISSUE OF OUT OF SCHOOL CHILDERN in collaboration of Children Global Network, Pakistan (CGN-P) and Pakistan Institute for Parliamentary Services (PIPS) on Wednesday, 24th July, 2019.

The Honourable Federal Minister for Federal Education and Professional Training Mr. Shafqat Mahmood gave the opening address of event deliberating the significance of Article 25-A of the Constitution. He rightly mentioned the development when Education was delegated to the Provinces after 18th Amendment, but, Supreme Court stepped in and flagged that Education is the Constitutional Responsibility and Federal Ministry of Education cannot be abolished and thoroughly delegated to the provinces. Thus, the Federal Ministry of Education continued to work and also working with the Provincial Ministries on Education. However, this relationship and liaison need to be further strengthened for uniform and collective efforts to bring every child to school.    

Honourable Speaker National Assembly Mr Asad Qaiser gave the inaugural speech  and highlighted that Parliament being the Creator and Custodian of  the Constitution is very well aware of its responsibility of implementing Constitutional Provisions in true letter and spirit. No matter if Education is a devolved subject, Federal Parliament will keep playing its vigilant oversight role and keep sensitizing the Provincial Governments wherever the important Constitutional Provision i.e. Article 25-A is ignored or violated. The Honourable Speaker showed commitment to engage Provincial Assemblies and Provincial Governments in the noble cause of implementing Article 25-A of the Constitution that guarantees educated, civilized and progressive nation. He appreciated the role of donor organizations especially British Council Pakistan for generously funding the noble cause of projects on promoting education and bringing out of school children towards education through ILM Possible Take A Child To School Programme.

The event was actively participated by provincial and federal parliamentarians, high officials from provincial and federal ministries of education, educationists, civil society organizations, donor agencies, education professionals and students.

The British High Commissioner, Mr. Thomas Drew gave the remarks deliberating on pertinence of the subject.   

In the First Session was conducted on the theme “Situational Analysis & Challenges on Article 25 (A) focusing out of school children” and chaired by Najeed ud Din Awasi, Chairmen Standing Committee for Education, National Assembly.  Hon’able MPA and Education Advisor to CM Khyber Pakhunkhwa, Mr. Ziaullah Bangash highlighted quality education based on merit based inductions of teachers, community mobilization approach for bringing out of school children into schools. Honable MPA and Chairman Punjab Assembly Standing Committee on Education, Ms. Ayesha Nawaz pointed out that basic causes of out of school children need to be addressed on emergency grounds while promoting private-public partnership. This inaugural session was moderated by Syed Shamoon Shamoon Hashmi, Joint Secretary, National Assembly Secretariat.

In the Second Session of the Dialogue was organized on the theme “Effective Implementation Strategies in place for Article 25 (A) Focusing out of school children” and chaired by Hon’able Senator Engr. Rukhsana Zuberi, Honourable Minister School Education of Punjab, Dr. Murad Raas highlighted the need of introducing information technology in education governance school management. He informed that Punjab is working on number of such projects that have started giving its outcome in shape of better education governance. Honourable Senator Engineer Ms. Rukhsana Zuberi lauded that education is common cause and every out of school child should be brought to the school. She flagged that new legislation need to be introduced for inclusive education that may deal refugees based in different areas of the country. The second session was moderated by Mr. Muhammad Rashid Mafzool Zaka, Executive Director, Pakistan Institute for Parliamentary Services (PIPS).

The third Session of the Dialogue, was focused on theme ” Way forward to ensure Inclusive and Equitable Quality Education for out of school children” and chaired by Honorable Parliamentary Secretary for Education, Ms. Wajiha Akram. Mr. Muhammad Tayyab, Secretary Education, E&SE Dept. Balochistan highlighted the measures taken by Balochistan Government to assure the quality education for all the children across the province. Honourable MNA and Federal Parliamentary Secretary on Education, Ms. Wajiha Akram focused that teachers in school should be inducted through FPSC and school teachers should be given proper service structure that should be linked with the students’ results for promotions. The Third Session was also moderated by Mr. Muhammad Rashid Mafzool Zaka, Executive Director, Pakistan Institute for Parliamentary Services (PIPS).

The Chief Guest of the concluding session of the event, Honourable Federal Minister on Inter Provincial Coordination, Dr. Fehmida Mirza deliberated that inclusive and education for all was the dream and mission of Father of the Nation, Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah. To accomplish this great dream of great founder, all the stakeholders at provincial and federal level need to work rigorously where Ministry of IPC can play an effective role to consolidate the synergies that will help in making ILM possible for every child of the nation. Dr Fehmida Mirza acknowledged the National Assembly, British Council and Pakistan Institute for Parliamentary Services (PIPS) in holding such absorbing brainstorming seminar. Muhammad Rashid Mafzool Zaka, Executive Director, PIPS presented vote of thanks appreciating the vision of Hon Speaker Mr Asad Qaiser in taking the initiative of ILM possible seminar. He also thanked all Members of Parliament and provincial assemblies especially MNA Ms Mehnaz Akbar for her dynamic efforts in holding the seminar.  The audience eulogized the Team Research and Legislation of PIPS who meticulously organized the event along with National Assembly PDU.

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