PESHAWAR: Efforts are afoot to wholly shift the administrative control of the intermediate education either to the Higher Education Department (HED) or Elementary and Secondary Education (E&SE) Department so as to avoid confusion in budget utilisation, according to sources.

HED has categorically conveyed to the E&SE Department to wholly hand over the intermediate classes to it or take over their full administrative control, sources in E&SE Department told Dawn.

Currently, both the education departments administratively control the intermediate classes, they said and explained that HED was responsible for the intermediate classes in colleges and E&SE in government higher secondary schools, which was a violation of the successive national education policies.

According to the education policies so far framed including the latest announced in 2009, the E&SE Department was responsible for the administrative control of the intermediate level education while colleges were for the degree level education, the sources said. However, during successive governments no one has pointed towards violation of this portion of the education policy.

They said that of the 182,000 enrolled students in 182 public sector colleges in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa 120,000 students were in intermediate classes. They added that 45,000 students were enrolled in the intermediate section of 400 government higher secondary schools. As such, HED is responsible for imparting education to 72 per cent of the intermediate students though it is not its mandate, they said.

Move aimed at bringing transparency in budget utilisation

“Though it is not our mandate, most of our resources are being utilised on the intermediate education,” an official in HED told Dawn. He said that the colleges were solely responsible for imparting above 12-year education.

The official said that after qualifying the secondary school certificate examination most of the students first opted for taking admission in the colleges because the education standard in the colleges was much better than the schools. “The students having poor marks and not qualifying for admission in colleges often take admission in the higher secondary schools,” he said.

The shifting of inter classes to any of the departments would also put that in trouble as in some areas there was either a college or higher secondary school.

If the E&SE Department fulfils its responsibility of taking over the inter classes than the colleges would have enough space for the students taking admission in the degree level classes, said the HED official. He said that it would also help HED to expand the 16-year bachelor of studies programme in the government colleges across the province.

When contacted, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Teachers Association of Colleges president Nasrullah Khan Yousafzai said that the intermediate education was the mandate of the E&SE Department. However, he said that thousands of students would be deprived of quality education being imparted in the colleges if it was shifted to the schools.

He said that many students of the public sector colleges were able to take admission in the medical and engineering colleges after obtaining excellent marks in the intermediate examinations every year. But, he said, the intermediate students graduating from schools had never been able to get admission in professional colleges.

Published in Dawn February 21th , 2015

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