Tarakai unimpressed by school regulator

Says PSRA has failed to fix fee structure even after five years


Muhammad Haroon September 20, 2021

PESHAWAR:

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Education Minister Shahram Tarakai has said that the Private School Regulatory Authority (PSRA) has failed even to introduce a fee structure since its inception in 2016 despite the fact that the officers deployed there are receiving good salaries along with other benefits.

Talking to The Express Tribune exclusively, Tarakai said that criticism against the education boards in the province for giving students higher marks despite the fact that they were out of school for the past two years, was unjust, adding that some students studied well while in quarantine at home and they were rewarded by the boards.

He said that the officials of the Malakand Board had been removed from their posts and FIRs registered against them so they are put behind bars. Tarakai, however, declined to comment on the fact that in the past 22 months three education ministers and four secretaries had been removed on charges of poor performance.

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He said that action was being taken against the testing agency and that they had stopped the payment of millions of rupees to the agency.

He said that the education boards will take the recruitment test for schoolteachers, adding that this fiscal year, 24 per cent more budget had been allocated for the education sector and Rs30 billion had been allocated for the newly merged districts. He informed this correspondent that Rs175 billion had been allocated for other districts too, so there was no shortage of budget.

“We are recruiting 43,000 teachers for the newly merged districts alone. Another 27,000 are being recruited in other districts. Around Rs6 billion is being spent on the purchase of furniture for schools so that 20,000 plus children could use them in 28 districts,” he said, adding that a large amount of Rs2 billion had been allocated for the scholarship of girl students.

The minister said that around 8,000 solar panels will be provided to schools and another 3,000 panels will be given in tribal districts and this project was in pipeline.

 

Published in The Express Tribune, September 20th, 2021.

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