Stories about parents

Education is not just about how many As you score

Recently, the British Education Secretary announced that students starting their A’ levels in England from fall 2015, will return to the previous system of an “all or nothing” exam at the end of two years of study. Eventually, these changes will not only impact exams in England, but will also trickle into tweaks to the manner in which Cambridge International Examinations and EdExcel International exams are organised. It is still not clear whether Wales and Northern Ireland will adopt these changes; Scotland has a separate system. The current system of units or modules has been criticised for allowing examination retakes and grade inflation. ...

Read Full Post

The expat

Hammad Khan, a young aspiring Information Technology (IT) professional from Karachi, moved abroad leaving behind his family and friends in the search for a better future. The young man acquired a bachelor’s degree in IT and joined a US-based software company; his arrival in the USA was like a dream that had come true. Hammad planned on staying in the US for about ten years, so he could make enough money to settle down comfortably in Pakistan. As the son of a civil servant – who could only manage to earn himself a one-bedroom apartment after his retirement – Hammad aimed to ...

Read Full Post

10 reasons sex education has nothing to do with vulgarity

While it is truly comforting that Punjab Chief Minister, Shahbaz Sharif — among many others — is taking such lively interests in our students’ moral upbringing, he may have mistaken ‘sex education’ for ‘vulgarity’. Here’s what he may be missing. 1) Sex education does not encourage illicit activities Does having an airbag in your car make you feel like driving your Honda off a bridge? Is my plane more likely to crash if the cabin crew shows me a flight safety instructions video before take-off? An examination of 73 studies on the subject has revealed that comprehensive sexual education does not make students more sexually active than they already ...

Read Full Post

Spare a thought for the policeman

I am an honest policeman disgruntled by the stigma attached to my profession. So, in order to let everyone see what my life is like, I have decided to pen down what a month in my shoes looks like. Despite performing my duties without taking any bribes, I fear I am still labelled a “chillar”, “thief”, “dishonest” and “corrupt”. There is no doubt that there are many people in my profession who may deserve those labels, but stereotyping everyone as the same isn’t an honest act either. I grew up like any other ordinary child with few facilities and festivities – ...

Read Full Post

The white garment

Thursday, August 11, 2011- 6:30 pm Saddar was too crowded today. I was already getting late. I took the Rs100 change from the cashier, which was all the money I was left with, picked up the shopping bag and rushed out of the store. The unusually humid August and the hassle I had been through since morning had turned me into a sweating shower by now. Despite that- I was excited. Very excited. My Ali was going to be happy today. He will not be disappointed in me anymore. He will not have to face any insults now. He was upset with ...

Read Full Post

Don’t shy away from the ‘talk’: Your children deserve sex-education

Due to some myopic stigmas related to sexual and reproductive health rights issues in our country, parents normally refrain from discussing such topics with children. The result is that sometimes children without awareness have extreme trouble in dealing with this. I appreciate those parents who consider it important to equip their children with knowledge about the physical changes they go through, while hitting puberty. But there are many parents who do not discuss such issues with them, considering it obnoxious. Thus, their children are left with no other option but to either consult their friends or log on to websites to ...

Read Full Post

DHA blast and the drug addicts of the future

For decades now, Pakistan has been known to be a hub for the production and smuggling of heroin and hashish but as of recent years, more psychotropic drugs have also surfaced to challenge a nation already struggling with a handful of troubles. With Muharram’s blast alerts, which raised immense levels of security, there was an explosion in my ‘supposedly’ safe neighbourhood of Defence in Karachi. The blast was a result of criminals and their makeshift lab for the drug crystal methamphetamine. During the investigation, it emerged that children from elite families from surrounding areas were buyers and users of the ...

Read Full Post

Is adoption an option?

It is a dream and sometimes a paramount desire for a married couple to have their first child. Some couples have his desire fulfilled soon after marriage, others a little later. However, a few people remain childless throughout their married life. Some of these couples go for adoption to experience the pleasure of raising a child. However, adoption is a very serious matter and the couple in question needs to seriously consider whether or not they would be more comfortable adopting a child from within the family or outside or with the help of welfare institutions. I was blessed with my first child three ...

Read Full Post

Parent trap: Friend or foe?

A cousin of mine quite often argued with me about how incessant and unnecessary interference in a child’s life can weaken the parent-child bond. According to her, in this day and age if parents unduly poke their nose in their children’s lives, especially those who have just entered or are about to end their teens, and don’t maintain a friendly relationship, their parent-child relationship may seriously suffer. The inclusion of electronic media in the lives of the modern society has opened up a huge world of awareness-for the young ones in particular. Now these young adults are well informed ...

Read Full Post

My parents love me, but I can’t love them back

My parents are not divorced and no, they don’t fight all the time. They love me and I know it. I just can’t seem to love them back. So the story goes somewhat like this. I was thrown into a boarding school when I was still young. I was bullied day and night; my teachers were not too great and I was beaten up by the prefects and everyone in authority. Sure, I had spent my childhood getting beaten up by my father and my grandfather a million times, but I thought boarding school was supposed to be like Harry Potter, not The Dead ...

Read Full Post