Joint Student Organizations Demand Education Reform in Nepal
In a united effort, six student organizations in Nepal have pledged not to shut down educational institutions. Nepal Vidyarthi Sangh, Akhil (Revolutionary), Aneraswaviyu, Akhil (Revolutionary), Samajwadi Vidyarthi Union, Nepal, and Akhil (Sixth) have issued a joint statement expressing their concern over the state of education in the country.
The student organizations argue that commercialization and concentration in education have left educational institutions in shambles. They are demanding the immediate release of the Federal Education Act, which has been delayed for an extended period.
In an 18-point demand letter submitted to Ashok Kumar Rai, the Minister of Education, Science and Technology, the students highlighted various issues affecting education. They raised concerns about the poor quality of education and its failure to provide employment opportunities. The students emphasized that this has led to capital flight and a loss of talent. To address these challenges, they called for comprehensive reforms to ensure accessible, quality education that prepares students for global competition.
The demands put forth by the students include:
- Canceling sharp fee increases in technical education and vocational training.
- Urgent appointment of officials in universities, service commissions, NAST (Nepal Academy of Science and Technology), and research centers.
- Ensuring effective monitoring and regulation of scholarships provided by the state to disadvantaged students.
- Regulating fees charged by campuses affiliated with foreign universities and mandating a 20% scholarship quota.
- Prompt publication of examination results at all levels.
- Immediate release of the stalling Federal Education Act.
- Addressing concerns raised by MBBS and BDS students who have faced prolonged absences from exams or campus fees refund.
- Creating an environment conducive to academic advancement without disruptions.
- Promoting uniformity in teaching methods and eliminating discrimination and conflict in school and university education.
- Expanding the curriculum to include biographies of nationally renowned personalities and prioritize subjects such as ethical education, data science, ecological agriculture, and human rights.
- Incorporating internships into agricultural and technical education to produce skilled manpower.
- Ensuring transparency in the disclosure and protection of university assets.
- Stricter enforcement of educational standards for private, public, and affiliated institutions.
- Immediate reversal of fee increases in universities like Pokhara University to eliminate corruption and broker influence.
- Compulsory enrollment of children from families receiving state services in government educational institutions near their homes.
- Effective implementation of the trilingual education policy.
- Swift implementation of the Skilled Manpower Development Program for engineering students through the University Grants Commission.
- Monitoring institutions involved in fraudulent practices during graduation level examinations conducted by the Medical Education Commission.
These student organizations aim to foster an environment where educational institutions become centers of knowledge creation and peace, free from disruptions. They have called on the government and relevant agencies to address their demands promptly.
The joint effort by these student organizations reflects their commitment to improving Nepal’s education system for the benefit of current and future generations.