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KP primary schoolteachers to be trained in English language

KP primary schoolteachers to be trained in English language

PESHAWAR: The elementary and secondary education department has planned to train 83,000 primary schools teachers to use English as the medium of instruction.

The relevant officials told Dawn on Tuesday that scores of primary schoolteachers had been struggling to do duty since the medium of instruction was changed from Urdu to English two years ago.

They said the training would cost Rs568.4 million.

The officials said of the total cost, Rs398.4 million would be provided by the education department and the rest by the British Council.

They said the training would be imparted in different phases spanning three years.

The officials said teachers would be trained for grade 3 in the ongoing financial year and for grade 4 and grade 5 in the next two years.

They said the education department had already provided names of 1500 teachers most of them with English Literature degree to the British Council for training.

The officials said the British Council would select 480 from among them through written test and interview.

They said the selected 480 teachers would go through the extensive 70 days training to become master trainers.

The officials said master trainers would train teachers at district level and that the selected master trainers would be tested after the training and would be graded and certified by the British Council.

A memorandum of understanding was signed between the British Council Pakistan and E&SE department in this respect here on Tuesday.

E&SE secretary Dr. Shahzad Bangash and country director of the British Council Jim Booth signed the MoU.

Education minister Mohammad Atif Khan, E&SE officials including director Rafique Khattak and special secretary Qaisar Alam were also in attendance, British Council director (English) Pakistan Arzu Daniel and head of English Pakistan Bilal Ahmad also attended the ceremony.

On the occasion, the minister said those training programmes should be highly professional and teachers should receive certification, according to the statement.

He said the program would bring value addition to the teaching skills of teachers in the province.

“We hope that British Council will continue such projects in the future,” he said.

Meanwhile, a senior official in education department told Dawn that the need for the training of teachers to use English as medium of instruction was felt when the PTI-led provincial government changed the medium of instruction two years ago.

He said many among the current primary teachers couldn’t teach to their students using English as medium of instruction.

The official said imparting English training was a good initiative of the government but despite that thousands of teachers appointed in 1990s would not enable them to use English as medium of instruction for having only matriculation qualification.

He asked how one could train a teacher in his 50s to use English as medium of instruction, who can’t read textbooks of English and general science of grade 4 and grade 5.

The official said the only thing to be done for such teachers was to replace them with young educated persons by sending them home with a handsome package.

“Such teachers are the basic hurdle to improvement in the education sector,” he said.

Published in Dawn, July 20th, 2016

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