Speakers at a conference yesterday urged the government to take proper initiatives to improve the existing education system which still bears “legacy of the British colonial era”.
They demanded global-standard education facilities, including focus on information technology and special care for students with disabilities.
A group of educationists and researchers placed the demands at a conference titled “Future of Education: Fellows' Visions” at Nabab Nawab Ali Chowdhury senate building at Dhaka University (DU). In collaboration with the Bangladesh unit of German political foundation Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (FES), Centre for Genocide Studies of DU organised the conference.
In opening remarks, Professor Imtiaz Ahmed of DU International Relations department said the British introduced an education system in the subcontinent to serve its own interest, and that is why our education system is divided into three mediums: Madrasa, English and Bangla.
“The country should create its own identity and modernise the education system,” he added.
Presenting a research paper on “Educating Children about peace and education: perceptions of the educators of BD”, DU Center of Advanced Research in Arts and Social Science's senior fellow Kazi Sameeo Sheesh said children may grow up to be violent in future if they are taught glorification of war and violence in the form of history.
“Lessons on peace should be given to children,” he added.
Presenting her research on “Schools of the Future in Bangladesh”, Turkish Asian Center for Strategic Studies Director Dr Sevinc Tunali said the country's education system should be reformed in line with the global job market.
She urged teachers to be more practical instead of using traditional methods during lecture delivery.
Presenting a research on “Online Distance Learning (ODL) policy framework for Bangladesh: An empirical perspective”, Islamic University of Technology teacher Dr Md Aktaruzzaman said if DU introduces online distance learning method for students living in remote parts of the country, it would bring about a positive impact.
Delivering a paper on “School Participation of Children with Disabilities in BD”, Consultant of Center for the Rehabilitation of the Paralysed, Rakib Hossain, alleged that 89 percent children with disabilities are not going to school due to lack of proper facilities for them.
He demanded equipped, inclusive schools to provide better support for children with special needs in the country.
With FES Bangladesh Resident Representative Tina Blohm in the chair, Executive Director of Bangladesh Prodibandhi Kallyan Somity Mohd Abdus Sattar Dulal and Teach for Bangladesh CEO Maimuna Ahmad also spoke at the conference.