Pakistan school students mask
Students wear protective masks maintaining safe distance as they attend a class, after government allowed reopening of schools from grade six to eight amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, in Peshawar, Pakistan September 23, 2020. Image Credit: Reuters

Karachi: Following resumption of academic activities in the post-coronavirus scenario, the upcoming annual examinations for school and college students in Pakistan will be based on the complete syllabus.

The announcement to this effect was made by Federal Minister for Education and Professional Training, Shafqat Mahmood, on Thursday after he chaired in Karachi the inter-provincial meeting of education ministers. Education ministers and secretaries of the four provinces attended the meeting.

The Federal Education Minister briefed media persons after the meeting that in the previous year a reduced syllabus had been taught to the students as the educational institutions had remained open for a shorter duration due to the coronavirus situation in the country.

He said that all the educational boards in the country had decided to conduct the annual exams of only elective subjects in the previous academic year.

He said forthcoming annual examinations in the country would be conducted in May and June next year. The O- and A-level examinations under the Cambridge system would also be held in the country in a timely manner, he said.

“It is indeed a matter of pleasure that the improvement in coronavirus situation in the country has allowed us to gradually normalise the system of education as was the case in the pre-pandemic era,” he said.

Mahmood informed journalists that the meeting of education ministers also discussed a World Bank-funded programme having a total value of $250 million that would be implemented around the country to promote education in the under-privileged areas in the post-coronavirus scenario.

He said the programme would improve public educational facilities in such areas of the provinces where the number of out-of-school children had been higher and female literacy rate had been unsatisfactory.

He said that a grant of Rs810 million was being released to the Sindh government to start implementation of the programme in the province.

The Education Minister said the meeting had also decided to form a countrywide body to collect authentic academic data, as lack of the same was the main reason behind unsatisfactory performance of Pakistan in the education sector.

He said the Education Ministers’ conference also decided to implement uniform academic calendar for school and college education in the country.