Participants at a convention demanded the government to have an open discussion on national education policy, from a wider perspective and ownership of citizens, and make it more inclusive and comprehensive.
They were of the view that there is a need for reviewing national educational policy by ensuring safe schools and inclusive education for all.
This unanimous viewpoint emerged at a convention organised by Pakistan Coalition for Education (PCE) at a local on Wednesday.
Participants at panel discussions took into account perspectives of various stakeholders, from all over the country, on themes of safety of schools and inclusive education.
Civil society activists, government officials, experts and academia from all provinces formulated recommendations on major education issues, including financing, governance, teaching staff, access and quality and inclusive education, with reference to the National Education Policy 2016.
While speaking about curriculum reforms, Tamkeen Niazi said that tolerance, interfaith harmony and peace need to be included in curriculum from the beginning.
While discussing aims of education, various insightful points emerged from the audience which focused on critical thinking, making the next generation healthy and responsible citizens.
Representatives from mainstream political parties touched upon various education-related issues in their constituencies, and elaborated the part of their party manifestos that dealt with education.
MNA Nafeesa Khattak discussed the initiatives taken by the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa government regarding out-of-school children and inclusion of girls in education system.
She also mentioned the need for legislation to bring children with special needs in mainstream education system.
Talking about gender mainstreaming, former member of Punjab Assembly Raheela Khadim Hussain shared initiatives taken by the Punjab government for bringing girls into education system.
She also proposed that these initiatives could be used as a role model in other provinces for access to quality education in lower socio-economic areas.
The event also featured video-screening of top five finalists of the video contest ‘Lights! Camera! Education!’ based on the theme of primary school education issues in the country.
Each video presented a unique perspective of various education issues across the country.
Published in The Express Tribune, December 31st, 2015.