Govt, PTI don’t care two hoots for students

The image shows a female school student writing in her notebook. — Photo by AP


LAHORE: The Punjab government’s decision to keep schools open on Monday -- the day of the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf’s shutdown -- has kept parents on tenterhooks.

People were expecting that the government would announce a holiday and the respective schools reschedule their examinations. Instead, it issued instructions to students and teachers to attend their institutions. It has even asked the special education institutions to ply their buses and bring special children and teachers to schools.

The PTI leaders say there will be very thin attendance in schools and colleges as roads will be blocked to traffic at almost 20 points in the city from 7am.

Many parents say they will not risk sending their children to schools amid the PTI’s protest. At one institution, this reporter saw some students chanting slogans during the past couple of days – “

Chhutti aai – PTI PTI”. Private vans and rickshaw drivers have informed parents that they will not be able to pick and drop children on Monday.

A teachers’ association representative said many teachers and students would have a genuine excuse of not attending their institutions. And women in particular would be in for trouble because of transportation issue.

A source said the department had also not allowed the varsities and colleges to reschedule their send-ups and December tests.

The education department has come up with the idea of calling teachers and students at 7am and retaining them till 6pm.

“The PML-N government is satisfying its ego by keeping the educational institutions open to tell the PTI that it has failed in Lahore without showing any care and respect of the citizens,” a disgruntled lecturer told Dawn. He said the college was holding December tests and teachers were supposed to conduct the paper from 9am to 12 noon. However, the college administration had told the teachers and other employees to reach college at 7am and leave the campus at 6pm, when the PTI would be dispersing. Those, who have no duty on Monday, have also been instructed to be present on the roads.

Special Education Department’s Lahore district officer said the government had clearly instructed that the special institutions would open as per routine.

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