Teacher at heart of Urdu controversy at Karachi school resigns

Govt cancels registration of school, imposes Rs100,000 fine
<p>Protest by the child’s parents outside the school. PHOTO: SAMAA TV</p>

Protest by the child’s parents outside the school. PHOTO: SAMAA TV

A teacher at the heart of the controversy at a school in Karachi where she forced children in her class to mock a student for speaking in Urdu and then painted the child’s face black, has resigned. Meanwhile, the school’s registration has been cancelled and a fine has been imposed.

In a statement put out by the school on Monday morning, it confirmed and condemned the incident.

“Civilizations Public School takes great pride in being one the few educational institutions to promote, encourage and celebrate Urdu,” its statement began as it went on to point out how it had organized mushairas (poetry recitals) apart from modeling an Urdu curriculum comprised of writings of Mushtaq Ahmed Yousufi, Patras Bukhari and Ibn-e-Insha.

“The school in no way promotes English over Urdu,” it maintained in the statement as it confirmed the “regrettable incident” of January 27, terming it against the school’s “ethos, ideology, philosophy and spirit”.

“We are a considerate and empathetic institution that does not condone or allow anyone to embarrass a student,” the school administration maintained.

“The teacher who took the wrong step is no longer part of the school and her resignation has been accepted,” the school said, adding that a show cause was issued to the teacher.

The school continued that they wish to further their mission of celebrating the Urdu heritage.

School registration cancelled

Meanwhile the Sindh Education Department has completed its inquiry into the matter and ascertained the fault.

Consequently, Sindh Education and Culture Minister Syed Sardar Shah had taken notice of the matter and had directed an investigation into the matter.

The investigation into the matter was carried out by a five-member committee of the Private School Directorate.

The investigation committee recorded the statements of the schools principal and parents of the teacher.

The investigation confirmed all the allegations of the child’s parent that the student was ridiculed and punished while their face was painted black for speaking urdu.

Based on the findings of the investigation committee, Shah directed to cancel the registration of the school and fine it Rs100,000.

“No student can be punished for speaking their mother tongue during studies,” Shah maintained.

“Children are legally empowered to obtain an education in their mother tongue,” he said.

Asked about the impact cancelling the school’s registration will have on other students enrolled there, Shah said that no impact will come on the studies of children.


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