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Prez Bhandari Prez Bhandari certifies Education Eighth Amendment Bill Education Eighth Amendment Bill

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KATHMANDU — President Bidya Devi Bhandari on Wednesday certified the Education Act Eighth Amendment Bill.

The Amendment Bill, passed by the Parliament on June 4, is regarded to be positive in terms of making significant changes in the educational sector.

Consequently, the Higher Secondary Education Board (HSEB), which regulated higher secondary schools across the country, has been transformed into the National Education Board (NEB).

The Board would now be responsible for conducting the national-level school termination examinations, including those at the end of grades VIII, X and XII, from the next academic session.

As per the new development, the national level school termination examinations (currently known as the “School Leaving Certificate examinations”), which was conducted by the SLC Board under the Office of the Controller of Examinations till now, would be held at the end of Grade XII from next academic session, instead of Grade X.

School education would be categorised into two levels: basic education (Grade I to VIII) and secondary education (Grade IX to XII).

Currently, there are four levels in school education, categorised as primary level (Grade I to V), lower secondary level (Grade VI to VIII), secondary level (Grade IX to X) and higher secondary level (grade XI to XII).

Bill bars opening of schools through private or cooperative investments. The schools would have be a member of guthi to open the schools from next year.

The Bill, in line with the School Sector Reform Plan, has provided a solution to the decade-long problem of temporary teachers. They would now be allowed to fight for permanent posts or accept retirement with a golden handshake scheme.

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The new law also envisions formation of an Educational Quality Testing Centre to test the quality of education. District Education Council would also be formed at district level to draft plans and policies for development of the education sector.

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New govt likely to have 18 ministers

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KATHMANDU — The new government is likely to have 15 to 18 ministries in total as Prime mInister KP Sharma Oli is preparing to give his cabinet a full shape.

As per discussion between Prime Minister Oli and CPN-Maoist Centre Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal, the government may include Madhes-based parties to make the government inclusive and have two-thirds majority in the Parliament.

According to Article 76 (9) of the constitution, the number of ministers cannot exceed 25 in the federal Cabinet. With the new constitution limiting the size of Council of Ministers to 25, the new governing team could be limited to 18 members including three state ministers. A formal decision on the matter is yet to be taken.

Speaking at a program organised in Kathmandu on Tuesday, UML leader Pradeep said: “Cabinet expansion is likely to take place on Wednesday. A few Maoist ministers will be joining the Oli government.”

“Our taskforce has recommended that the government form a 15-member Cabinet. Some of the ministries will be integrated and others scrapped.”

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Ishwor Pokhrel, Pradeep Gyawali, Rabindra Adhikari, Raghubir Mahaseth, Bhanu Bhakta Dhakal and Padma Aryal are the probable ministerial candidates from the UML.

Like3wise, Maoist chair Dahal and senior CPN-MC leaders Narayan Kaji Shrestha and Ram Bahadur Thapa have been given the responsibility of selecting ministers from their party.

Probable ministerial candidates from the Maoist Centre include Ram Bahadur Thapa, Matrika Yadav, Pampha Bhusal, Devendra Poudel, Lekhraj Bhatta, Chakrapani Khanal, Pun, Girirajmani Pokhrel and Dev Gurung, according to the sources.

Thapa may lead the CPN-MC in the government as deputy prime minister. Yadav is being considered for appointment since he represents Madhes, Bhusal as a woman while Poudel is one of the leaders who joined the party lately. Poudel had left the Baburam Bhattarai-led Naya Shakti Party to join the Maoist Centre just ahead of unification talks with the UML.

Leaders involved in discussions said the Maoist Centre could appoint up to eight ministers if the Cabinet size does not exceed 18.

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