The Roxbury Latin School
A Statement of Policy
The Islamic Republic of Pakistan
The United Nations Children’s Fund
topic b: vocational education
Establishing vocational education throughout Pakistan is not practical or realistic considering the opposition it faces. Despite the fact that the wide spread availability of vocational education would make it an excellent way to help reach some of the standards outlined in the Millennium Development Goals, Pakistan does not believe that the idea of establishing vocational education programs within its boundaries is a viable one. While a small amount of vocational education programs could be established, the creation of a widespread vocational education program that would be available to everyone is not only unfeasible but also is not a priority of Pakistan’s.
In Pakistan, working class occupations are regarded with great disdain. Despite providing secure futures for those that undertake them, these jobs are still viewed negatively. A vocational education prepares students almost exclusively for specialized blue-collar occupations, and this fact makes vocational education unappealing to the people of Pakistan. If the people of Pakistan view working class occupations negatively, then creating a system of vocational education would be pointless as no civilians would wish to enroll in it because it would yield a working class occupation which, in their eyes, is of lesser value. Because of the negative feelings that the Pakistani people hold towards working class occupations, the creation of a large vocational education program would be ill-advised.
Vocational education is not one of the Pakistani government’s priorities, as the military occupies much of its time and attention. The development of a powerful military and the training of new soldiers take precedence over providing civilians with vocational education. With military as the first priority, the Pakistani government focuses on it above all other issues, including vocational education.
Making vocational education available to everyone would be a very good way to implement two of the United Nation’s Millennium Development Goals. The first is to “eradicate extreme poverty and hunger.”1 Vocational education would provide many with specialized jobs and a fixed income and help realize this goal. Millennium Development Goal number eight is to “develop a global partnership for development.”2 Vocational education in Pakistan, a developing country, would provide work for the unemployed and teenagers. These things, however, would only weaken Pakistan’s military, drawing funds and manpower away from it. This is another issue that makes vocational education less appealing to the Pakistani government.
The most practical solution is to implement vocational education as a first step. If civilians showed some interest in vocational education and if it helped the country’s economy then the Pakistani government would consider expanding the program. If the program failed, however, the Pakistani government would terminate it forthwith. These measures would at least attempt to provide some form of vocational education for Pakistani citizens and would serve as a trial to determine whether or not vocational education would have any benefits for Pakistan.