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The five-day Sherig Conference, which begins on December 27 at Sonamthang Central School in Pangbang, Zhemgang is closed to the media, education minister Norbu Wangchuk said.

Previously known as DEOs’ Conference, the conference is considered one of the most important annual events of the education ministry where the education fraternity comes together to discuss issues and challenges faced by the sector.

Lyonpo Norbu Wangchuk said the media would not be allowed to attend the conference. “In this conference, we are going to engage in bonding amongst ourselves and engage in leadership, team building and communications skills,” he said. “The Sherig matters that we discuss would be provided in a press release.”

According to the conference’s information booklet, the conference is themed “A King’s Vision. A Country’s Future. A People’s Dream,” based on His Majesty’s address at RUB’s third convocation ceremony in Paro, 2009, where His Majesty reminded the nation about the importance of developing a sound education system to fulfill the country’s vision and aspirations.

About 130 educationists from across the country are expected to attend the conference that will discuss the education blueprint, issues from dzongkhags/thromde/schools, 12th Plan key outcomes, draft national education policy and max moderation, among others. A slot is also allotted to get candid with the minister.

This is not the first time the media was barred from attending the education conference. In 2013, the media was not allowed to cover the education conference in Phuentsholing. In June this year, the media was barred from attending the annual dzongdag conference in Thimphu.

When this issue was raised at the monthly meet the press session, Lyonpo Norbu Wangchuk had said that the annual dzongdag conference was a working meeting and media was only allowed to attend the inaugural session.

“We can’t have the meeting with full blown media presence because then some of the dzongdags will hesitate with you all hanging around,” the education minister said.

Staff Reporter

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