KARACHI (Our Correspondent): The Sindh Government has initiated the process of integrating the culture and heritage in the Curriculum in school level with collaboration of international donors.

The Sindh Government has organized a one-day workshop on Curriculum Review for Integrating Culture and Heritage into Curriculum for Primary, Middle, and Secondary Schools in Sindh with collaboration of the international donors including UNESCO, the Italian Agency for Development Cooperation (AICS).

UNESCO and the Sindh Education and Literacy Department (SELD) of the Government of Sindh spearheaded this initiative as part of efforts to strengthen the education system of Sindh through the incorporation of cultural heritage into classroom learning.

This is a pioneering intervention in Sindh to connect basic education with the concept of sustainable development from the perspective of heritage education.

UNESCO aims to undertake a comprehensive review of the Sindh school education curriculum from grade 1 to 10, identify areas with respect to cultural heritage, and propose an actionable framework to incorporate heritage into curriculum and textbooks at the primary, middle, and secondary school level. Scholar and Education specialist Mr. Javed Jami Chandio said that the most recent textbooks developed in Sindh show a marked improvement, but there is a need for further improvement.

The workshop was the first effort of its kind to meaningfully engage stakeholders from both the culture and education sectors. Representatives from SELD, Department of Curriculum Assessment and Research (DCAR), Sindh Textbook Board (STBB), Department of Culture, Tourism, Antiquities, and Archives, along with civil society representatives braved the monsoon rains to congregate in Karachi and engaged in a consultative review process to identify areas of improvement within the curriculum and textbooks. Stakeholders presented recommendations to address policy gaps, conceptual deficits, and operational challenges for the inclusion of heritage into education.

While addressing the participants at the closing ceremony, Syed Sardar Ali Shah, Provincial Minister for Education and Culture, Government of Sindh said that the Strategic Framework that UNESCO will develop as part of this project will be a valuable guide for the government to implement much-needed educational and social reforms, and he pledged the government’s full support for this important initiative. He stressed that curriculum reform was a key foundational tool for the development of an inclusive, just, and respectful society.

Dr. Fouzia Khan, Chief Advisor (Curriculum Wing) and Additional Secretary, SELD, Government of Sindh highlighted the importance of this partnership with UNESCO and expressed her hope that this intervention will result in meaningful educational and cultural reforms in the province.

Abdul Fatah Shaikh, Director Archaeology and Museums for the Government of Sindh said that linking culture and education is a vital innovation towards sustainable development that creates space for promoting culture and heritage education not just across Sindh, but across the globe. He emphasized the need to inculcate respect for cultural diversity and heritage in all tangible and intangible forms.

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