PESHAWAR, June 17: The Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf-led government has introduced several initiatives in the education sector of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa for the 2013-14 fiscal year in line with the election campaign slogan of the party to enforce ‘education emergency’ if voted to power.
The size of the education sector spending under the new Annual Development Programme has been increased to Rs13.83 billion for the financial year 2013-14 from Rs12.18 billion of the outgoing fiscal year.
The multiple initiatives of reforms are mostly in the elementary and secondary education department, according to the budget document.
One of the big issues of the education was poor monitoring system, Provincial Minister for Finance Sirajul Haq said in his budget speech. “So the provincial government has allocated Rs600 million for establishment of comprehensive monitoring system of schools and colleges,” he said.
The minister said that every year government utilised billions of rupees on the construction of educational institutions but in the absence of proper monitoring, the results were not achieved up to the expectations.
“For monitoring of educational institutions, 500 impartial monitors will be recruited,” he said.
The government will provide financial help for setting up private schools in those areas, where there is no government school. For this purpose, Rs500 million has been earmarked in the budget.
The said fund will also be utilised to reorganise the Education Foundation. The Education Foundation would be responsible to set minimum service delivery standards in the primary and secondary schools, put suggestions for independent and transparent examination system and take on board all the stakeholders in formation of education policy.
A sum of Rs60.55 billion has been allocated in the budget for elementary and secondary education department including Rs56.44 billion as salary and Rs4.11 billion non-salary budget.
For higher education department, an amount of Rs6 billion has been allocated including Rs5.424 billion salary and Rs0.630 billion non-salary budget.
The government has Rs500 million to introduce a voucher scheme to provide educational opportunities to the children of under privileged segments of the society including labourers, daily wagers, orphans and brick kiln workers.
Under the voucher scheme titled Iqra Feroghe Taleem Voucher Scheme, 100 private schools would be enlisted in the province where these students would be enrolled.
Similarly, Rs500 million have been earmarked for the Chief Minister Endowment Fund. The Fund has been established for financial assistance to deserving students of self financing scheme in the disciplines of engineering, energy, geology, IT, electronics and public finance in all educational institutions, excellence centres and universities of the province. The number of self finance seats will also be increased.The PTI-led government has allocated Rs800 million for “Rokhana Pakhtunkhwa Public-Private-Partnership in Education” that was launched by the previous government. Under this scheme, the government pays to the private schools for admitting the students in the areas where there is no government school.
In the budget, government has also doubled the number of scholarships under the Stori Da Pakhtukhwa Scheme, launched by the previous government. The government allocated Rs360 million for the purpose.
A sum of Rs100 million is allocated for removing the gender disparity in education. The girl students from the districts with less/weak girls enrollment would be granted monthly stipend of Rs200 to remove gender disparity. Their parents would also be persuaded to enroll their daughters. About 41,667 girls will be benefited from the scheme.
An amount of Rs1 billion has been allocated in the budget for provision of missing facilities in the government schools.
The government has allocated Rs100 million for third party validation to asses the performance of educational facilities in terms of enrollment, dropouts and absenteeism etc.
A sum of Rs15 million has been earmarked as hard area allowance for lady education supervisors. In order to ensure presence of teachers in the backward areas, hard area allowance at the rate of 50 per cent of the basic pay would be granted to the lady education supervisors in six backward districts, according to the budget document.