LAHORE: Fourteen thousand elected representatives of student councils in public schools of 11 districts of south Punjab took oath on Tuesday.

The main ceremony was held at the Government Boys Comprehensive Higher Secondary School, Multan, while other districts were connected through Zoom.

South Punjab School Education Secretary Ehtasham Anwar administered the oath to the elected representatives of schools situated in urban areas of Multan.

Under the oath, the elected representatives vowed to forget the bitterness of elections, take their opponents along, assist their teachers and work for the welfare of their fellow students. They also vowed to exhibit exemplary conduct and discipline to become role models for others.

Elections were held early this month in public schools of all dists of S Punjab

Speaking on the occasion, Mr Anwar said unlike the unions where students with political inclinations participated, the criteria for student councils was such that only hardworking, capable and disciplined students could contest and get elected while they would operate under a disciplined and controlled environment and a serious violation could lead to their dissolution.

The elections for student councils were held early this month in public schools of all districts of south Punjab. Around 11m students had cast their votes to elect office-bearers, including presidents, vice-presidents, general secretaries and class representatives in 4,538 elementary and high schools for boys and girls.

The elections were organised on the pattern of general elections in the country and entailed nomination of candidates, election campaigns, use of ballots and casting of votes.

The main objectives of the constitution of student councils include developing and nurturing leadership skills in the students as well as equipping them with life skills such as management, communication and public relations. The organisers claim that the entire exercise is likely to introduce and strengthen democratic values at the grassroots in a country whose record is far from satisfactory on this account. The responsibilities of the council representatives include becoming role models for other students by exhibiting the best discipline, performance, conduct and character to arrange co-curricular activities such as Bazm-e-Adab, speech/debate, poetry, essay writing, painting, and other such competitions. These leaders would also lead special initiatives such as promotion of book reading amongst the students, improvement of writing skills, green schools, guide/encourage others on how to access the online magazine, arrange sports activities in the school, ensure active participation by the students, assist the school administration in identifying the best athletes amongst them for representing school in competitions to help the school administration in maintaining discipline at the campus.

The students assist the school administrations on special occasions such as parents day, annual functions. They are supposed to communicate the problems faced by the students to the school administration, convey the announcements by the school administration to the students, as and when needed and guide the new students.

Published in Dawn, September 7th, 2022

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