Dato Prof. Lee Yee Cheong and Prof. Dr. Manzoor H. Soomro President ECOSF called on Minister for Federal Education and Professional Training (MFPT) on May 18th, 2017
Academician Dato Lee, Yee Cheong - the Hon. Chairman of Governing Board of International Science, Technology and Innovation for South-South Cooperation under the auspices of UNESCO (ISTIC), Kuala Lumpur Malaysia, the Chairman of Inter Academy Partnership Science Education Programme (IAP-SEP) and Prof. Dr. Manzoor H. Soomro President ECOSF called on Federal Minister for Federal Education and Professional Training (MFPT) - Engr. Muhammad Baligh Ur Rehman. The objective of holding this meeting was to apprise the Minister Baligh Ur Rehman about the idea of “Fusion of Civilization” (FOC), which is a unique curriculum design concept which engages two sets of experts; the curriculum design experts and experts on History of Science and Technology. These experts would work together to develop a curriculum for young children to reflect our old civilizations to enable our young children to deeply understand who we actually are and how we as a human civilization have evolved. The major aim of developing this curriculum is to foster peace right in the beginning of young children by employing Inquiry Based Science Education (IBSE) among the countries that share a common heritage of the ancient Silk Road.
Dato Prof. Lee articulated that teachers should not teach answers to kids, rather they should engage students to develop curiosity in order for them to be more creative and develop critical thinking, and rote learning must be discouraged. Dato Prof. Lee said that this kind of curriculum should help teachers to promote learning by doing, which will be critical to engineering and technology education, especially in the context of future expansion and infrastructure development under the One Belt – One Road and China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). In order to materialize this, Chinese Association for Science and Technology (CAST), Inter-Academy Partnership Science Education Programme (IAP SEP) and ECOSF along with other partners are organizing an International Science Education Forum in Beijing, China in July 2-5, 2017, Dato Lee Informed. This is an attempt at understanding and reflecting the history of science and technology of ancient civilizations from the Islamic Golden Age in the Middle East westwards to Europe and eastwards through Central Asia to India and China, he added. Dato Lee requested Minister Balighur Rehman to nominate an expert on curriculum design and history of science education to take part in this forum.
Minister Baligh Ur Rehman greatly appreciated and fully endorsed the idea of Fusion of Civilization and he showed his willingness that this can be taken up as a project at the MoFEPT. Minister Baligh Ur Rehman told that MoFEPT has recently taken an initiative to develop national curriculum in the country and the objectives of FOC are in line with ongoing national curriculum development program in Pakistan. Minister Baligh Ur Rehman also requested Prof. Dr. Soomro to come forward to contribute to the development of national curriculum development by supporting and including Inquiry Based Science Education teaching methodology.
Prof. Dr. Manzoor H. Soomro President ECOSF informed the Minister that ECOSF has launched Inquiry Based Science Education program in the ECO region. In this context, ECOSF recently conducted a High Level Policy Forum on IBSE methodology in Pakistan in collaboration with Higher Education Commission (HEC) and the French Embassy. Prof. Soomro highlighted that IBSE methodology is a key to improve the quality of students entering into tertiary education system in Pakistan and that will ultimately help the HEC and MoFPT. Prof. Soomro introduced to the Minister about the LAMAP Foundation of France and its contribution to the development of IBSE methodology in France and beyond, and how it can be implemented in Pakistani education system with support of MoFEPT.