By Hassan Khan
Education is considered one of the necessities of life. It does not only shape a person’s outlook but also provides him with growth opportunities with respect to monetary terms. Education is anything from seeking knowledge of mathematics from a home tutor to learning French lessons from an organized institute like French classes in Brisbane.
The importance of education for both men and women is stressed upon in Islam as well. Our beloved Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said:
“The seeking of knowledge is obligatory for every Muslim.”
That means that educating yourself and people around you is not only your social responsibility but a religious one as well. Today, the topic of discussion is the education system in one of the cities in Pakistan that has a literacy rate of approximately 77% which is a commendable effort of the people for the love of knowledge.
Chitral is one of the most beautiful areas of Pakistan with huge mountains and exquisite weather. The educational facilities in Chitral are not up to the standard but there are always ways for improvement. Some of the ways to improve the quality of education and education system in Chitral are:
- Addressing the Overcrowding Issues in Classrooms
The foremost issue is overcrowding in the classrooms. Due to lack of infrastructure, most of the classes in the areas are congested. It has a lot of negative impact on the learning process of the students, for example, the teachers are not able to provide individual attention to the students, and the students lose their interest in studies and create noise to distract other students. It can be eliminated by focusing on more employment of teachers, building new housing projects to cater for the needs of new schools in the areas and encouraging students to work in group activities to avoid any chaos.
- Teachers’ Training and Development
The training and development of the teacher are very important. Most of the instructors teaching in schools follow old and conventional methods to impart knowledge. As the advancement in technology, the teachers of this age should be fully equipped to teach students quality material that may build a stronger base for them. The schools can opt for sending their teachers to the coaching centers and learning different practices to implement in the school. If this idea sounds costly, they can always go for online courses which they can learn in their own time.
- Availability of Funding for Schools
A lot of schools lack infrastructures like proper classrooms, books, libraries, and laboratories. There is a greater need for funding to assist the schools in providing an ideal environment for learning. In this aspect, the schools can conduct annual days for fundraising and persuade NGOs to allocate funds for the school in these rural areas.
- Promoting Extra Curricular Activities
Extra-curricular activities are the most pertinent and memorable moments of a student’s life. A lot of schools do not promote these physical and mental activities out of the course curriculum. These activities shape an individual’s soft skills like interpersonal, problem solving and communication skills. The schools should conduct sports days and annual functions where the students can demonstrate their skills. Give them some time free at school to do the preparation and they will be excited and motivated for this endeavor.
- Focus on Female Education
Although Chitral is at the top with respect to education according to statistics, it is a sad that female enrollment is only 28% in the high schools. We should promote the education system to accommodate girls of the area. Teachers in the schools should conduct awareness sessions for parents to educate them about the perks and privileges of female education and how their daughters will make them proud.
- Educational Innovation
The main focus in this era is on creativity and innovation due to the advancement in the technological sector. The schools should also incubate an environment fostering creativity and innovative way of learning for students. Nowadays, bookish knowledge is not enough and the students should also learn different aspects of living. For instance, it might not be a bad idea to introduce a basic mechanics course or home economics course for students to learn the challenges of everyday life.
- Quality Control Department
Each school should have a quality control and audits department to keep a check on the quality of education for students. They should evaluate and appraise teacher quarterly giving them feedback on improvement policies. The need for reevaluating the course curriculum is also significant with the changing needs of a new era.
Education is not only a responsibility but also a birthright of each and every individual around the world. The rural regions like Chitral and adjacent areas might be deprived of the facilities but they have the light of seeking knowledge burning in their hearts which makes them fight with every obstacle in the way. It is our obligation to contribute as much as we can to the betterment for the cause of education.