Free, compulsory education sought by Sub-panel

Kathmandu, November 15

The Education Sub-committee under the Parliamentary Committee for Women, Children, Senior Citizens and Social Welfare today suggested that the Ministry of Education amend the Education Regulations to ensure free and compulsory education guaranteed by the Constitution.

An informal meeting was held at the Ministry of Education where around half a dozen lawmakers were present to discuss the amendment process of the Education Regulations.

Ganesh Man Gurung, coordinator of Education Sub-committee today said they discussed the draft of the Education Regulation at the request of Education Minister Dhaniram Poudel.

He said, “Though discussion with lawmakers on amending Education Regulations was not necessary, the education minister wanted to be sure about incorporating issues of public interest.

So he asked us to advise on the draft and we agreed.” He further said that today’s discussion was only on the surface level as the meeting was called at a short notice and they were not in a position to advise on each and every point in the Regulations.

“We have sought a few days to study the draft and give appropriate suggestions to the ministry,” he added.

MoE sources also confirmed that discussion with lawmakers was not necessary but the minister insisted on implementing it only after getting the consent from lawmakers. Hence, the discussion.

Stating that it was already late for issuing the Education Regulation to implement the provisions in the amended Education Act, he said, the ministry was lingering in unnecessary discussions.

He added, “Rather than following the process of seeking approval from the finance ministry and law ministry before its approval from the cabinet for implementation, the education minister was bothering about such minute things.”

A committee formed to prepare the draft of the Education Regulations had submitted the first draft to the education minister on October 18.

After receiving the first draft, the education minister has been holding discussions with various stakeholders such as the umbrella organisation of private school operators, guardians, teachers and others to get their feedback regarding inclusion of their issues.

However, National Private and Boarding Schools Association Nepal has expressed dissatisfaction with some points in the regulations.

President Bidhya Devi Bhandari had authenticated the eighth amendment to the Education Act on June 30.

Sub-committee in final stage of report preparation on higher education

A sub-committee formed under lawmaker Ganesh Man Gurung, coordinator of the Education Sub-Committee under the Parliamentary Committee for Women, Children, Senior Citizen and Social Welfare to identify problems in higher education and recommend suggestions, is in the final stage of preparing its report.

The sub-committee was formed on October 21 with 15-days’ time to submit its report to the main committee, but due to festivals such as Tihar and, Chhath, it could not submit its report within the given time frame.

Now it has been asked to submit the report by November 20.

“We have already talked to officials from the University Grants Commission, Ministry of Education, educationists, vice-chancellors of various universities and officials from various foreign universities operating in Nepal,” he said, adding, “We have called Tribhuvan University VC, Prof Tirtha Raj Khaniya tomorrow for talks.”

He stated that the first draft of the report has already been prepared and circulated to all 11 members of the committee for their information and further suggestions.

“Higher education is in poor state. Thus, as per the recommendation of the sub-committee, the main committee is likely to direct the government to form a commission to look after the higher education sector,” he added.