Principals of 35 schools affiliated with India’s Central Board of Secondary Education are taking part in the Jeddah conference. (AN photos)

Education for Peace and Development Conference – India

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(Original article: Siraj Wahab, arabnews.com, Oct. 25, 2015)

Education should not be for wealth creation alone, says Indian diplomat.

JEDDAH: Indian Consul General B.S. Mubarak has said education is not merely for the creation of wealth as is the case now.

“Wealth should be converted into well-being and education should focus on solving the world’s problems,” he said in a keynote address at the conference of principals of 35 schools affiliated with India’s Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) in Jeddah on Saturday.

The conference, whose theme is “Education for Peace and Development,” is being held at the International Indian School-Jeddah (IISJ), led by Principal Syed Masood Ahmed.

Mubarak felt, and rightly so, that the focus of education should be on sustainable development. “It should inculcate in students the well-being of the world at large,” he said. “Humanity’s greatest advances are not in its discoveries, but in how these discoveries, such as vaccines, have reached the common man.”

Mubarak said one of the greatest inventions was the Internet and the platforms available for using it, such as PCs (personal computers) or smartphones.

“Today, the greatest minds of the world can get together through crowd-sourcing, through Microsoft Encarta, through Wikipedia to resolve the challenges we face,” he said.

Education, he said, should focus on values and create awareness of climate change, biodiversity, gender equality, health care, poverty alleviation, clean water and sanitation, and environmental protection.

He cited two recent cases to drive home his points about how wealth creation had devastating effects on the environment.
British Petroleum (BP) was responsible for the massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010. “It was later revealed that that environmental disaster was due to a lack of safety measures and because of cost-cutting,” he said.

The same is the case with the Volkswagen emission scandal, he said. “The company tried to cut corners at the cost of the environment,” he said. “Germans are known for their values and the bosses at VW are products of some of the best business schools and universities in the world yet they indulged in unethical practice to increase profits.”
“Education should teach our children fair practice in all affairs,” he said.

In attendance at the opening session were Education Consul Raghib Qureshi; IISJ Managing Committee Chairman Mohammed Raziq Abdul Vahid and the principals of 35 schools, including International Indian School-Riyadh Principal Dr. S.M. Shaukat Perwez; International Indian School-Dammam (IISD) Principal E.K. Mohammad Shaffe; International Indian School-Buraidah Principal Col. J.A. Rocque; Delhi Public School-Riyadh Principal Mairaj Mohammad Khan; New Al-Wurood International School Principal Sreedevi V. Menon; Modern International School-Al-Ahsa Principal Kazi Siddique Haseeb and Al-Muna International School-Dammam Principal K.P. Mammoo Master.

The host school, IISJ, and its principal, Masood Ahmed, were praised by the participants for the excellent quality and theme of the conference. The principals later went into closed door sessions to discuss a variety of issues regarding the academic calendar, scheduling of vacations and the impact of new rules in the functioning of CBSE schools in Saudi Arabia.

Meanwhile, International Indian School-Jubail emerged as the winner of the Inter-School Quiz Competition 2015. The first runner-up was the International Indian School-Buraidah. The second runner-up was Dunes International School-Alkhobar.

Among other schools which made it to the quiz finals were International Indian School-Jeddah, Al-Yara International School-Riyadh and New Al-Wurood School-Jeddah.

The highlight of the quiz competition was the active participation of the teams and the energetic and knowledgeable quizmaster, C.P. Joy, who meticulously drafted the questions which covered a wide range of topics related to current affairs, science and technology, art, literature, and general knowledge.

Syed Masood Ahmed announced the results and IISJ Chairman Raziq Abdul Vahid and Managing Committee member Khaleeq Syed presented the trophies to the winning teams.

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