International Literacy Day – Minute Mirror

Public awareness is necessary to promote literacy and education for all, in line with the mission “No one is left behind”. Nations that have developed in the world have reached this point only on the basis of education and a literate society. This is why, like every year, International Literacy Day is celebrated all over the world, including in Pakistan. The objective is to sensitize millions of illiterates around the world to the importance of literacy and education. In this regard, the Directorate of Literacy and Non-Formal Basic Education uses all its resources. The Punjab Department of Literacy and Non-Formal Basic Education has been trying since 2002 to increase the literacy rate in the province. The Department of Education under the government of Punjab is also on the path of revolutionary changes following the international and national policies and plans based on the needs of the learners. One of the main concerns that the department is working on is the public-private partnership through which the community is involved in the management and planning of education at the school level, which is very productive and beneficial for the school. improving society’s lifestyles.

This also provides needs-based policies for the department. The use of ICT is also adopted by the Directorate of Literacy and Non-Formal Basic Education. Records of all non-formal schools in Punjab, their teachers and children studying in the schools have been digitized and online including their various socio-economic indicators so that future policies can be analyzed and compiled on this base. Examinations and assessment are an important part of the education system. The Department’s assessment has also been moved to real-time technology, whereby individual child and school assessment reports are stored in a central database which is analyzed by experts from the Department of Literacy and non-formal basic education. Based on this, future teacher training is planned to determine which teachers need guidance in which subjects. The same real-time technology is used by the District Education Officer (Literacy), Literacy Mobilizer and all field staff to monitor and evaluate school progress. The efforts made by the Department of Literacy and Non-Formal Basic Education in recent years are worth mentioning.

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Last year, the first non-formal education policy in the history of Punjab was approved and implemented. Over 51,000 out-of-school children have been enrolled across the province of Punjab under the new enrollment drive. More than 8,000 inmates in the prisons were literate and educated so that they could return to society and play a positive role in improving society. About 150,000 non-formal education institutes are created for disadvantaged and marginalized communities. In Muzaffargarh district, 370 non-formal schools have been established for out-of-school children, in which more than 13,000 poor and needy children receive valuable education. In the history of the country, only one non-formal school for minors was established in the district prison. For the first time, an adult education center for illiterate fishermen was established, where 25 fishermen received basic education. The aim of establishing adult education centers is to provide basic education to uneducated people in society. In this regard, 25 adult education centers have been completed. Similarly, more than 50 non-formal schools have been established in madrasas and mosques, where 2,000 children are educated alongside religious education. 370 committees composed of parents and community activists have also been set up in non-formal schools for parents and community members to monitor the performance of these schools and support them in various areas in accordance with the public partnership policy -private. Along with the establishment of non-formal schools, teacher training was also organized to improve the quality of education.

As in previous periods, this year, 482 children also completed primary education and passed the 5th class school examination conducted by the Punjab Examination Commission with remarkable results. In order to improve the performance of non-formal schools, the government of Punjab has provided funds to the department to purchase the necessary teaching materials for these schools and the learners studying there. However, more resources are needed to achieve the goal of an 85% literacy rate by 2030. Along with education, teachers and students in this department also participated in other organized activities by the government. In line with the vision of the government, the department, in accordance with the policy, should encourage every student to plant a tree every tree planting season. According to government policy, literacy staff and teachers have been vaccinated 100% with the COVID-19 vaccine. The Department of Literacy and Non-Formal Basic Education is committed to promoting education in remote and disadvantaged areas of Punjab. It is hoped that in the coming times, the efforts of this department will bear fruit and that there will be a marked decrease in illiteracy and out-of-school children in the province of Punjab.

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