As the prices of most goods and services have skyrocketed, there is good news from the unlikely news. The fees charged by the education sector, especially private universities, far exceed the affordability of the relevant age group.
In accordance with the austerity system set by the International Monetary Fund, funding for public universities has also been reduced, forcing them to pass the burden on to students.
This was before the shaking government realized that the Covid-19 pandemic was real in March. The first step taken by the National Security Council was to close the university from March 16. After reopening in mid-September, the university has been calculating the cost of the closure, which is not only reflected in the decline in student income, but also in at least in an accessible environment, increasing connectivity to transition to distance learning.
The Higher Education Commission (HEC) has issued various guidelines to continue as much as possible and minimize the impact of the interruption. Less than half of the universities have made some progress in improving online learning systems. HEC mentioned student fees, but the only guide provided in this regard is that it is a challenge.
In this context, the recent announcement by Lahore (Forman Christian College University) (FCCU) is only welcome. It is the oldest private higher education institution and enjoys a long historical reputation. The announcement has repeated details and was discussed in print and electronic media as an example for other private universities to follow.
The most important function is the size of the cost reduction. According to the announcement, FCCU has reduced the fees of its graduate programs by as much as 50%. In order to make higher education affordable, FCCU “believes that this decision will enable students from different socioeconomic backgrounds to obtain affordable quality education.” In addition, FCCU “hopes that it will also improve the diversity of students, so that students from different backgrounds can learn and interact with each other, and contribute to the progress and development of the country.”
Most importantly, the fee reduction is more than just a declaration of good intentions. The FCCU first made serious efforts to raise alternative funds, and only made an exciting announcement after obtaining guarantees. Most of our private universities have been established as profitable businesses by well-known business families because they have the greatest ease of doing business in the higher education market. Sharing some tax-free profits with students will not cause much harm.
1. In the oldest place of study and my alma mater, Lahore, it is said that “education prepares for tomorrow” has replaced the “motto”. Say goodbye to critical thinking.
Tailstock 2. Of the 11 SBP Memorial Chairs, only 5 are full. Four-fifths were decided during the tenure of the previous governor. The incumbent only attends AJK University. Although qualified candidates were interviewed in October last year, there were still 6 vacancies. Mr. Governor, the impact on SBP goes far beyond policy interest rates.
Tail 3. A few days ago, in the talk show “Break Point with Malick”, the host digs at Waqar Masood (the newest member of the SAPM platoon) because he is part of various governments and has a condescending one Guests. As a civil servant, Vagal has no choice. However, despite signing a contract that can be terminated, the excavation work is more suitable for guests, who serve PML-N, Musharraf, PPP and caregivers.
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Last Updated on 10/18/2020