Lahore: A representative of the Department for International Development (DFID) and a renowned educationist, Sir Michael Barber has said that the basic educational structure of the Punjab province is getting absolutely changed owning to the Schools Reforms Roadmap of the Punjab Chief Minister, Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif and expressed the hope that the Punjab province would be a glaring example in the field of education for all the countries in the region during the coming four to five years. He said that it was for the first time in the history of the province that such an extensive measures, had been taken under the revolutionary vision of the Punjab Chief Minister regarding the uplift of the education sector, the enrollment of children in schools, reduction in the drop out ratio and the provision of missing facilities in schools.
He expressed these views while speaking at a press conference flanked by Special Assistant to CM Punjab on Education, Syed Zaeem Hussain Qadri, Saira Afzal Tarrar MNA, Secretary Schools Aslam Kamboh, Vice Chairman Punjab Educational Endowment Fund Dr. Amjad Saqib at 90-Shahrah-e-Quaid-e-Azam, here today. He pointed out that the initiatives taken by the Punjab Chief Minister had been acclaimed not only within the country but also by the world institutions including the World Bank.
Sir Michael Barber disclosed that as much as Rs.16 billion has so far been spnet on the provision of missing facilities in schools. Likewise, as many as 81 thousand teachers had been recruited during the last two years purely on merit basis whereas some 1.80 lakh teachers had also been trained in that context. He said that the attendance of the students in schools remained over 88 percent while that of teachers recorded over 87 percent during the current year under the Schools Reforms Roadmap. He also disclosed that over three thousands schools had also been upgraded during the last year.
Sir Michael Barber informed that as much as Rs.16 billion had been spent on the provision of missing facilities in schools including, of course, boundary walls, running water,toilets, electricity and furniture. Meanwhile, computer labs had also been set up in as many as 4815 schools at a cost of Rs.5 billion. Sir Michael Barber, on this occasion, assured that in order to make the Educational Reforms Programme of Punjab government a success, all out cooperation would be extended. He said that the way Punjab Chief Minister had got the educational roadmap implemented, the example of it was rare to be found in the rest of the world. He opined that the Chief Minister, certainly, was a visionary and a pro-education chief minister.