No concrete plans for intermediate admissions

Sindh college education department has failed to come up with a strategy despite looming deadline

Safdar Rizvi May 29, 2020
KARACHI: While the provincial government has been lauded for its efforts in dealing with the coronavirus crisis, the Sindh education department has still been unable to come up with a concrete plan of action to facilitate students.

Two months ago, the steering committee of the education department for both schools and colleges decided to grant first-year intermediate admissions to students based on the results of the 9th grade. The move was made in keeping with the postponement of matriculation examinations, waiting for which would deprive almost 200,000 students of starting college.

However, the irresponsible attitude of the Sindh college education department has ruined the efforts and the decision of the steering committee of the department, and despite a span of two months, no progress has been made regarding the matter.

Sources said that so far, no planning has been carried out regarding the admission process. A meeting was called but neither were any concrete actions taken nor were any committees set up for the purpose.

Additionally, the department has also failed to fix the merit for admission in the first year, which has created confusion among students and colleges alike because the academic session for colleges is expected to begin in August this year.

As per the centralised admission policy, nearly 100,000 admissions will be granted in over 150 government colleges across Karachi. As against previous years, students will be able to submit their admission forms online due to the pandemic.

Sources also revealed that per the existing procedure, the centralised admission committee - established under the Sindh colleges director-general - is responsible for contacting the matriculation board to obtain the results of the students and define the merit accordingly. Despite the recent announcement, the results of 9th grade students have not been obtained so far.

On being contacted, acting colleges director-general Professor Abdul Hameed Chandar said the offices are presently closed because of the lockdown, hence no work could be done. When questioned about obtaining the results of 9th grade students, Prof Chandar did not seem to be aware of the recent announcement and said that admissions could not be granted without matriculation results.

When reminded of the decision taken on March 16 during a meeting presided over by Sindh Education Minister Saeed Ghani, a notification for which was issued on April 21, Prof Chandar said that all progress had to be halted due to the pandemic.

“Once the colleges reopen, we will look into the matter,” he said.

It is pertinent to mention that even though all the educational boards, educational administrative institutions and educational institutions along with the college education department are closed, the chairpersons of Sindh’s educational boards, after holding several meetings, have put forth their recommendations to cancel or postpone the matric and inter exams.

Despite the lockdown, the Institute of Business Administration (IBA) Karachi and the NED University of Engineering and Technology, for instance, issued their admission policies and have also commenced the enrollment process.

The college education department, however, has so far been inactive regarding admissions.

The Express Tribune tried contacting college education secretary Baqar Abbas, but he refused to comment on the matter.

Published in The Express Tribune, May 29th, 2020.


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