Crime Education USA

Las Vegas: Gunman Among 3 Killed in Campus Shooting

The incident occurred near BEAM Hall on the campus of UNLV on Wednesday morning…reports Asian Lite News

At least three people, including the gunman, were killed in a shooting on the campus of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV), local police said.

The incident occurred near BEAM Hall on the campus of UNLV on Wednesday morning, Xinhua news agency reported.

Addressing media persons, Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department (LVMPD) Sherif Kevin McMahill said: “There is no further threat on campus. No more threat to the community. The suspect is deceased. Right now, we know there are 3 victims, but unknown extent of the injuries. That number could change.”

The injured were rushed to hospital, the police said.

McMahill said UNLV campus and other branches of the varsity were being closed for the day “out of an abundance of caution.”

Taking to X, LVMPD said: “This is an active investigation. Please continue to avoid the area and watch for responding emergency units.”

Around noon local time, the university posted an emergency notice online, saying, “University Police responding to report of shots fire in BEH evacuate to a safe area, RUN-HIDE-FIGHT.”

LVMPD did not disclose the conditions of the injured in the shooting. Investigation of the shooter’s motives is underway.

A hotline has been set up for those impacted by the shooting on campus.

Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman posted on X: “Tragic and heartbreaking news coming out of @unlv. Praying for everyone on campus as law enforcement responds to the situation,”

In Washington, D.C., the White House said it is monitoring the shooting reported at UNLV.

UNLV has a student enrollment of about 25,400 undergraduates and 4,300 graduates.

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Arts & Culture Education India News

Mahabharata, Ramayana En Route to NCERT Textbooks

The panel has also proposed that textbooks should give space to all dynasties that ruled India instead of just one or two….reports Asian Lite News

Epics like Ramayana and Mahabharata should be taught in schools as part of the history curriculum under India’s ‘classical period’, a high-level National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) panel has recommended.

The panel has also recommended that the Preamble of the Constitution be written on the walls of all classrooms in vernacular languages, the committee’s chairman, Prof C I Issac told ANI over phone.

The Social Science Committee of the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) set up to revise the social sciences curriculum for schools, has made several proposals including the introduction of the Indian knowledge system, the Vedas and Ayurveda in textbooks.

The suggestions have been part of the final position paper on social sciences, which is a key perspective document that helps in the development of new NCERT textbooks on the subject. The proposal has yet to get a final nod from NCERT.

“The panel has made recommendations for the classification of history into four periods: the classical period, the mediaeval period, the British era, and modern India. Till now, there have been only three classifications of Indian history- ancient, Medieval and modern India,” Issac, a retired history professor, said.

“Under the classical period, we have recommended that Indian epics–Ramayana and Mahabharata–be taught. We have recommended that the student have an idea of who Rama was and what his purpose was. A little bit about the epic,” said Isaac.

The panel has also proposed that textbooks should give space to all dynasties that ruled India instead of just one or two.

Isaac informed that the panel has suggested that the book contain information about victories and heroes like Subhash Chandra Bose.

“The students must know about the Indian heroes and their struggles and victories so that they can get confidence,” he said.

“We have also suggested that the Preamble should be written on the walls of all classrooms in vernacular languages,” he added

The panel has also proposed that the name Bharat should replace the word India in textbooks.

On this, NCERT had last month, said the process of syllabus development was still ongoing.

“It is too premature to comment on the news being flashed in the media on the concerned issue,” the NCERT said. (ANI)

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Education India News Jammu & Kashmir

J&K’s Gyanodaya Express Starts with 700 Students

This unique train will undertake a transformative journey, carrying 700 female students from various universities in the Union Territory as they travel across different states for educational purposes….reports Asian Lite News

In a ceremonial commencement at Katra railway station, Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha of Jammu and Kashmir inaugurated the Gyanodaya Express.

This special train is set to embark on a transformative journey, transporting 700 female students from diverse universities within the Union Territory as they traverse through different states for educational endeavors.

In a post on X, J-K LG Sinha said, “Flagged off Gyanodaya Express, College on Wheels, the first-of-its-kind mobile educational endeavour in Jammu Kashmir, aiming to empower approximately 700 girl students from Universities of the Union Territory.”

Terming it an educational pilgrimage for the students, LG Sinha said,” The journey endeavours to dissolve boundaries of classrooms, and streams and evolve education by providing immersive, collaborative, and project-based learning experiences.”

Gyanodaya Express also known as College on Wheels is inspired by the life of Mahatma Gandhi, when he undertook an epic tour of the country by train, interacted with people from all walks of life and awakened society with universal and eternal values of Satya and Ahimsa, Truth and Non-Violence.

The journey of students along with mentors to centres of excellence such as the Indian Navy, ISRO, and Sabarmati Ashram will provide them with new ideas, insight and hands-on knowledge for new research, an official statement said. (ANI)

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Education Lite Blogs

GEMS Education’s Eco-Friendly Campus to Open in Masdar City

The GFA site will be net-zero energy, generating as much energy as the facility consumes, minimising environmental impact and promoting energy efficiency…reports Asian Lite News

GEMS Education is set to add to its growing network of schools in the UAE with the September 2024 opening of GEMS Founders School – Masdar City (GFA), a groundbreaking net-zero energy campus that has sustainability at its core.

The school – the first in the heart of Abu Dhabi’s Masdar City, the world’s first zero-carbon, zero-waste, car-free city – is purpose-built using cutting-edge materials and technology and incorporating clever architectural elements to substantially lower its carbon footprint, conserve resources and minimise waste.

Offering the National Curriculum for England, initially to students from FS1 to Year 8, GFA is GEMS’ third Founders school and its first in Abu Dhabi, bringing the total number of the group’s schools in the UAE to 43.

Dino Varkey, Group Chief Executive Officer, GEMS Education, said: “GEMS Founders School – Masdar City is bold, ambitious, and pioneering. It reflects GEMS’ commitment to sustainability, the environment, and a greener planet.

“With its wealth of eco-friendly features and new sustainability models in education, we are immensely proud of what this school means and stands for. Across our schools, we teach climate change literacy, and our students rightly demand that we back up our words with action.

“With GEMS Founders School – Masdar City and other of our schools leading the way, we are nurturing environmentally conscious global citizens and preparing them to make a positive impact on the world.”

The GFA site will be net-zero energy, generating as much energy as the facility consumes, minimising environmental impact and promoting energy efficiency. This sustainability-driven strategy features an extensive solar panel system spanning 9,500 square metres, projected to generate 3.1 million kWh of energy annually. These solar panels serve a dual purpose: powering the school and providing shade to the building’s roof areas, car park, and walkways, enhancing energy efficiency and lowering temperatures.

The school’s enhanced thermal insulation, optimised building orientation, and other innovative features are set to reduce its annual CO2 footprint by 1,154 tonnes. Water conservation measures, waste management strategies, electric vehicle charging points, as well as exceptional facilities for effective teaching and learning further exemplify GFA’s commitment to a sustainable future.

Matthew Burfield, Senior Vice President – Education at GEMS Education and Executive Principal/CEO of GEMS Founders School – Dubai, said: “As the GEMS Founders family of schools evolves and expands, it remains a beacon of innovation, collaboration, and excellence. We are proud to bring the Founders brand to Abu Dhabi in such a sustainable form, in line with the green vision of both the UAE and Masdar City.

“GFA will pioneer a transformative approach to education by establishing an innovative model for environmental responsibility, where sustainability and commitment to ecological stewardship play a central role in nurturing the leaders of tomorrow and contributing to a greener, more sustainable future.”

GFA follows the opening of GEMS Founders School – Dubai in 2016 and GEMS Founders School – Al Mizhar in 2018. Known for providing high-quality education and exceptional value, the GEMS Founders schools already serve more than 10,180 students. With a projected initial capacity of 900, GFA is set to increase that total substantially from September next year.

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-Top News Asia News Education

GB Students, Parents Protest Against Fee Hike in Schools

The students have complained that their schools lack even the basic requirements, they do not have furniture, they have to sit in open classrooms and have no drinking water facility….reports Asian Lite News

Hundreds of school students in Gilgit along with their parents took to the streets against unreasonable hikes in their school fees.

The students have complained that their schools lack even the basic requirements, they do not have furniture, they have to sit in open classrooms and have no drinking water facility.

A disgruntled student speaking about the condition of his school, said, “We have gathered here to protest against the unwarranted fee hike in our schools. They are increasing school fees every other day. If they are increasing the fee, what facilities are they providing us? We do not have cool water to drink during scorching summers. There is no proper arrangement for drinking water”

They complain, that there are no teachers in their school for certain subjects and often the classrooms are herded with students with no one to impart knowledge and education.

“There is no teacher appointed for the subject of Physics. We do not have a regular teacher for Physics. There is nothing in our science lab. They do not teach us anything, we are just herded inside the room. Our motive behind paying the fee is not this!,” the student added.

The public schools in Gilgit-Baltistan have been in dire straits for decades. The local administration has turned a blind eye to the education sector in the illegally occupied territory.

Earlier, Karakoram University students also held similar protests against the administration for unreasonable increases in their college fees.

It has been a continuous attempt of Islamabad to keep the youngsters of Gilgit Baltistan deprived of education and other human development opportunities.

In such a scenario becoming an educated and intellectual individual is still a distant dream for the young population of Gilgit-Baltistan. (ANI)

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Education India News

UGC Unveils New Regulations for Foreign Universities

The release further stated that the qualifications awarded to the students in the Indian campuses shall be recognised and treated as equivalent to the corresponding qualifications awarded by the FHEI in the main campus located in the country of origin…reports Asian Lite News

The University Grants Commission (UGC) on Wednesday issued the regulations to facilitate the entry of Foreign Higher Educational Institutions (FHEIs) into India, in line with the recommendations of the National Education Policy 2020, and to provide an international dimension to higher education in the country.

In their Indian campuses, Foreign Higher Educational Institutions can offer study programmes leading to the award of certificates, diplomas, degrees, research and other programmes at the undergraduate, postgraduate, doctoral and post-doctoral levels, the UGC said in a release.

The regulations are called, “University Grants Commission (Setting up and Operation of Campuses of Foreign Higher Educational Institutions in India) Regulations, 2023.”

These regulations aim to ensure that the education imparted in the campus is at par with that of the main campus in the country of origin and that its operations comply with the applicable laws and Regulations, the UGC said.

As per the release, the FHEIs intending to establish campuses in India should have secured a position within the top 500 in the overall category of global rankings, as decided by the UGC from time to time, or should have secured a position within the top 500 in the subject-wise category of global rankings/ should possess outstanding expertise in a particular area, as decided by the Commission from time to time.

The release further stated that the qualifications awarded to the students in the Indian campuses shall be recognised and treated as equivalent to the corresponding qualifications awarded by the FHEI in the main campus located in the country of origin.

“The qualifications awarded under these Regulations shall be equivalent to any corresponding degree awarded by Indian higher educational institutions. There shall be no further requirement of seeking equivalence from any authority. The degree shall have all benefits, rights, and privileges as obtained in the case of a degree awarded by Indian Higher Educational Institutions ordinarily,” the UGC release read.

Two or more than two Foreign Higher Educational Institutions can collaborate to set up campuses in India, provided each Foreign Higher Educational Institution meets the eligibility criteria individually.

The campuses of FHEIs in India shall have the autonomy to recruit faculty and staff as per their recruitment norms. However, the FHEIs shall ensure that the qualifications of the faculty appointed shall be at par with the main campus in the country of origin, it added.

Also, the institutes shall have a mechanism to address students’ grievances in their Indian campus. However, the students may appeal to the Commission if the institutes do not redress their grievances.

No programmes can be offered online and/or in Open and Distance Learning modes under these Regulations. However, lectures in online mode not exceeding 10 per cent of the programme requirements are allowed, the release mentioned.

As per the UGC regulations, the FHEIs are required to seek prior approval from the Commission before starting any new programme on their campus in India. The qualification(s) offered in the campus of the FHEI in India under these regulations shall be awarded under the name and seal of the FHEI in the country of origin, it added.

Also, the UGC has separately mentioned the requirements in case of a joint venture between FHEI and Indian Universities or any Indian company. Further details regarding the UGC regulations are available on the Commission’s official website. (ANI)


Education India News Tech Lite

India’s Higher Education Soars to New Heights

Seven Indian universities have secured positions in the top 100 in Asia. …reports Asian Lite News

India emerged as Global Leader as it overtook China in the recently released QS Asia Universities Rankings 2024.

With record number of 148 Indian Universities featuring amongst the top Asian Universities, India became the Nation with highest number of universities ranking in the QS Asia Universities Ranking 2024 followed by China with 133 Universities.

This has been the highest number ever of Indian Universities to feature amongst the Asian Top Universities, with 37 new entrants. China has only 7 new entrants this year.

In this edition, a total of 857 institutions from 25 Asian countries were ranked. The performance of Indian Universities this year has been remarkable as there is notable 33% increase in the number of universities ranked from the previous year.

Seven Indian universities have secured positions in the top 100 in Asia. Furthermore, Indian statistical institutes have made a remarkable debut, securing the 220th position in the QS Asia rankings. IIT Bombay, retained its position in the Asian Top 50, by securing 40th Rank in Asia. It remained the leading institution amongst the Indian Universities in QS Asia Universities Ranking 2024 while Chandigarh University has climbed to the top spot (1st) amongst the India’s private Universities.

The transformation of India’s higher education system, currently the world’s third largest, has been significantly influenced by the implementation of the National Education Policy (NEP-2020) by the present government. This historic decision has catalysed groundbreaking changes, marking a crucial milestone in the country’s education sector after a hiatus of 34 years. The reforms introduced through NEP-2020 have played a pivotal role in elevating the standards of education in India, propelling the nation’s education ecosystem onto an innovative and progressive path.

CU clinches top spot among private universities

Continuing its success streak, Chandigarh University (CU) has clinched its top spot among the private universities in India, in the QS Asia University rankings 2024 – while soaring to 149th spot this year compared to 185th spot secured in the previous edition of the ranking (2023).

The University is at the 11th spot among the public and private universities of the country. Besides this, the university has been ranked in the top 1.1% of all universities in Asia. CU is also ahead of nine IITs and five NITs and has surpassed many international universities in the QS World Ranking, including the universities from China, Japan, and South Korea and other nations.

Chandigarh University stands proudly among India’s top 15 universities on six parameters – academic reputation, employee reputation, international student ratio, international faculty ratio, inbound student exchange and outbound student exchange. CU actively promotes cultural exchange through outbound and inbound exchange programs, enriching students’ experiences and shaping future leaders.

Speaking about the performance of Indian universities in the QS Asia Rankings 2024, Chandigarh University Chancellor Satnam Singh Sandhu said, “Indian Universities have performed exceptionally well in the QS Asia Rankings 2024, which is a matter of pride for the Nation. A total of 148 Indian Universities have featured in the rankings this year in comparison to 111 Universities ranked in 2023 rankings, showcasing an increase of 33% in just one year. Chancellor Chandigarh University attributed the remarkable performance of Indian Universities to the ground breaking reforms undertaken by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during the last 9 years.

He said, “When PM Modi came into power in 2014, there were only 16 Indian universities that held ranks in the QS Asia University Rankings. However, today under the visionary leadership of PM Modi, India has recorded the highest tally of 148 Universities in the Top Asian Universities, surpassing China’s number of 133. This incredible increase in the number of Indian universities entering the QS Asia Rankings in just a span of 9 years is a historical achievement. It underscores the nation’s commitment to academic excellence and highlights its growing influence in higher education global.”

Satnam Singh Sandhu further added, “Since PM Modi launched and implemented the New Education Policy (NEP-2020), it marked India’s journey towards becoming a Vishwa Guru. Since then, there has been an exemplary improvement in education standards that matches global criterion, increase in the number of international students, and growth and achievements in research and innovation in the country, which has led to Indian universities getting their due recognition in the global rankings.”

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Australia Education Iraq

Australian Universities Collaborate to Build Opportunities for Refugee Education

The consortium will represent the 12 participating universities and work with the federal government, businesses and not-for-profit organisations to identify best practice models of refugee education…reports Asian Lite News

 Twelve Australian universities have established a new consortium to help build pathways to higher education for refugees, it was announced on Monday.

Led by Canberra’s Australian National University (ANU) , the Australian Refugee Welcome University Sponsorship Consortium (ARWUSC) will offer refugees in the country who were displaced by conflict the opportunity to restart their education, reports Xinhua news agency.

Bronwyn Parry, a leading global health and social medicine researcher from ANU and co-lead of ARWUSC, said in a media release that the formation of the new organisation marks the start of a new chapter in Australia’s refugee history.

“Refugees have historically made a very important contribution to modern Australia, building the successful, harmonious multicultural society we have today. They have also made significant inputs to our economy and can play a key role in driving our future prosperity and social wellbeing,” she said.

The consortium will represent the 12 participating universities and work with the federal government, businesses and not-for-profit organisations to identify best practice models of refugee education.

The government has committed to increasing Australia’s humanitarian refugee intake to 20,000 places in the financial year 2023-24, an increase of 2,125 from 2022-23.

Brian Schmidt, the Vice-Chancellor of ANU, said the consortium would deliver long-term benefits to Australia by offering opportunities to “extremely talented” young people who have had their educational journey disrupted.

“We need to do something to address this, and this team of higher education experts, led by ANU, is leading the charge with the help of the Australian government,” he said. 

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Business Education India News

High-Profile Exits At Unacademy Continue

It’s the second senior exit at the edtech startup in recent months….reports Asian Lite News

High-profile exits at Gaurav Munjal-run edtech company Unacademy continue and now, its chief financial officer (CFO) Subramanian Ramachandran has quit, according to reports.

It’s the second senior exit at the edtech startup in recent months.

“Ramachandran has put down his papers and is currently serving his notice period,” said a report by The Morning Context report, citing sources.

In August, Unacademy’s chief operating officer Vivek Sinha had resigned.

The company was yet to comment on the latest development, as the online edtech sector in the country is reeling under massive slowdown since last year.

In November last year, Unacademy laid off around 350 employees, approximately 10 per cent of its workforce.

This was followed by another round of layoffs in March this year, which led to a further reduction of about 12 per cent or more than 350 employees.

Munjal announced to reduce the size of the team by 12 per cent to “meet the goals we are chasing in the current realities we face”.

“The global economy is enduring a recession, funding is scarce and running a profitable business is key. We have to adapt to these changes, build and operate in a much leaner manner so we can truly create value for our users and shareholders,” Munjal said.

Late last month, Unacademy-owned software-as-a-service platform Graphy laid off about 20-30 per cent of its workforce, or nearly 50 employees, as part of a restructuring exercise.

A spokesperson from Graphy had said that “we are committed to growth and have a strong belief in our mission to empower creators and educators to scale their online brands and business by launching their online courses and selling them through our platform.”

“We continue to make significant strides in achieving our goals, and our commitment to our mission is unwavering,” it added.

According to the company, the job cuts happened on the basis of performance and had nothing to do with layoffs or revenue growth plans.

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-Top News Education India News

NCERT’s ‘India’ to ‘Bharat’ Proposal Sparks Political Debate

Kerala CM suggests that the new directives continue a pattern of biased omissions in educational materials….reports Asian Lite News

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Thursday said that the recent proposal by the National Council of Educational Research and Training to replace ‘India’ with ‘Bharat’ in textbooks is unacceptable, but Governor Arif Mohammed Khan said that is not an issue.

Vijayan, in a statement issued here on Thursday night, said as per the decision of NCERT’s Committee on Social Science, the word ‘India’ should be changed to ‘Bharat’ in the textbooks of the academic branch.

“The Constitution refers to our nation as both India and Bharat. The politics behind avoiding India in it is as clear as daylight. The Sangh Parivar fears the inclusive politics represented by the phenomenon called India. The hatred against the word India is part of this,” he said.

While Khan using the same argument said there is nothing wrong in it as the Constitution mentions both India and Bharat and hence it’s fine.

However Vijayan goes on to add that the latest directives should be perceived as an extension of the previous instances of bigoted omissions from educational materials, which encompass the chapters concerning Mughal history and the ban on RSS in the aftermath of Gandhi’s assassination.

“The NCERT is continually supporting efforts by the Sangh Parivar to distort history. The Textbook Committee has been eager to promote the fake narratives of history that the Parivar has been peddling,” pointed out Vijayan.

“The Sangh Parivar has always been opposed to the idea of an ‘India’ based on pluralism and coexistence. The NCERT’s new proposal is the latest example,” he added and urged democratic forces in the country to oppose the unconstitutional proposals in the NCERT committee’s position paper.

Governor Supports Dual Usage

Reacting to the recommendations of a panel of the NCERT to replace the name ‘India’ with ‘Bharat’ in school textbooks, Kerala Governor Arif Mohammad Khan said that it is the constitution which uses both words–India and Bharat. Speaking to the Media, Arif Mohammad Khan said, “Actually our Constitution says and uses both the words, India that is Bharat shall be a union of states…Nobody has proposed to make any amendment in the Constitution.”

This comes as an NCERT panel, headed by historian CI Issac, recommended replacing ‘India’ with ‘Bharat’ in school textbooks. The recommendations were made by a seven-member Committee for Social Sciences, which is among the committees constituted by the NCERT to prepare position papers on various subjects. Issac said, the “term India started being used commonly only after the establishment of the East India Company and the battle of Plassey in 1757″.”We have unanimously recommended that the ‘Bharat’ should be used in textbooks for students across classes,” Isaac said.

Ever since the panel came up with the aforementioned recommendation, opposition leaders have made a huge outcry over the issue with some even alleging that the BJP government is trying to create “confusion” as several institutions use ‘India’ in their names.
Labelling the move as a “political decision”, Shiv Sena (UBT) leader and MP Priyanka Chaturvedi said, “It is unfortunate that an India Vs Bharat narrative is being put forward. (The words) ‘India that is Bharat’ were inscribed into our Constitution by none other than Dr. BR Ambedkar. The coming generations won’t forgive them (the Centre) for making this differentiation. India is also Bharat and Hindustan for us. If the BJP had any sense of national pride, the name ‘India’ wouldn’t be changed to ‘Bharat’.”

Meanwhile NCERT on Wednesday said that “it is too premature to comment” on reports in sections of media concerning changing ‘India’ to ‘Bharat’ in its textbooks and noted that the development of a new syllabus and textbooks is in the process for which groups of domain experts are being notified by it. (ANI)

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