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May 8, 2017

Focus on holistic development as Sindh launches new policy


May 8, 2017

The Sindh government’s School Education Department (SED) became the first division to launch the Early Childhood Care and Education policy in the country, on Saturday.

The SED officials were congratulated on achieving the milestone by MNA and chancellor Szabist, Dr Azra Fazal Pechuho, while presiding over the launch ceremony.

She said the policy would not only develop students’ empathy with fellow human beings but also with nature and environment. Furthermore, she stated that the programme would foster social skills otherwise difficult to learn at home.

She urged the department and other stakeholders to implement the ECCE policy in letter and spirit so as to effectively tackle the challenge of bringing out of school children back to school.

Speaking over the policy’s successful implementation, School Education Department Secretary Abdul Aziz Uqaili said recruiting qualified ECCE teachers could prove challenging.

Keeping ground realities in mind, the secretary stated that the SED will initially introduce a one-year ECCE programme for children aged four to five years. The programme would be scaled up later.

He informed that a recruitment process has been initiated and a rigorous teachers’ training programme will also be organised.

Briefing the attendees over the ECCE’s curriculum, head of the SED’s curriculum wing, Dr Fouzia Khan said the syllabus has been based on the national curriculum which caters to the needs of children for holistic development.

Sharing progress on ECCE in Sindh, Additional Secretary Schools and ECCE Provincial Coordinator Imtiaz Bhatti said a separate Project Implementation Unit has been set up which will be converted into the ECCE Directorate in future.

Reform Support Unit’s chief programme manager, Faisal Ahmed Uqaili, presented an overview of the ECCE policy. He stated that formulating the policy was the first step but there was still a long way to go to achieve desired goals.

Imran Yousuf Shami, SED collaborator Plan International’s country director, assured his organisation’s full commitment in implementing the policy.

He also promised providing 100 sets of books for starting ECCE classes in the Government Boys Higher Secondary School and the Church Mission School.

According to an SED official, the policy focuses on holistic development of a child including basic needs for protection, food and healthcare and education.

Plan International’s country adviser, Imtiaz Alam, and Szabist director colleges and schools, Lubna Khalid, also spoke on the occasion.

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