Islamabad-The British government is ready to collaborate with Pakistan for the promotion of education and to bring out of school children to educational institutes, said British envoy on Tuesday.
Federal Minister for Education and Professional Training Shafqat Mahmood was called on by a British delegation led by UK High Commissioner to Pakistan Thomas Drew. Director British Council Pakistan Joanna Reid, Head of Department for International Development (DFID) and Rosemary Hilhorst, were among the delegates. The meeting was also attended by Federal Secretary Education, Arshad Mirza. The education minister welcomed the British delegation and said that education is the top most priority of this government. He said that Pakistan is currently facing various challenges in educational sector and that the government is fully committed to resolve these challenges. Shafqat Mahmood said that among the various challenges, the most important ones include, bringing out of school children to schools, establishing a uniform education system and curriculum, ensuring quality education and working on skill development. “We are working on making a comprehensive education policy that will address these challenges, we will ensure quality education and will provide a level playing field and equal opportunities to everyone”, added the federal minister for education and professional training. He further said that a special program for street children will also be introduced.
The education minister said that although most powers and functions of education ministry after 18th amendment have devolved to provinces but the federal education ministry will try to take a lead role in setting a direction and work in coordination with provincial governments for introducing positive changes. The minister informed the delegation that the ministry and its attached departments will also be organized in such a way that they will be reflective of our priorities in the education sector. He further said that the main focus will also be on skill development and human development. He added, “Vocational and technical training is very important and we are in the process of setting up skill universities”.
The British delegation congratulated the federal minister for federal education and professional training on his appointment. British High Commissioner Thomas Drew appreciated the that the government of Pakistan intends to take for promotion of education and offered help and support in this regard and said that they are looking forward to work closely with the government of Pakistan for the progress and prosperity of the people of Pakistan and for promotion of education in Pakistan.
He pointed out that the number of out of school children in Pakistan is a big problem and assured his all-out support.