Thursday December 09, 2021

School evaluation system launched in Islamabad

August 20, 2016

Islamabad: Under the Prime Minister’s Education Reforms Programme (PMERP), the Capital Administration and Development Division (CADD) has launched an online monitoring and evaluation system for all government schools in the Islamabad Capital Territory.

The CADD oversees government educational institutions in Islamabad’s urban and rural areas through the Federal Directorate of Education, while the PMERP is ‘watched and directed’ by the prime minister’s daughter, Maryam Nawaz, through a committee comprising some MNAs, including CADD minister, and handpicked officials.

According to adviser to the PMERP Ali Raza, monitoring and evaluation assistants (MEA) have been appointed to visit designated ICT educational institutions twice a month to report on sanctioned and available teaching and non-teaching staff and their attendance; classrooms, toilets and state of furniture; students enrolled and present; state of physical infrastructure and remarks on missing facilities; safety and security hazards if any; overall cleanliness standard of students, classrooms, toilets and open areas; non-salary budget allocated and available; official visits made by senior management; training and evaluation visits; free textbooks given to students, and functionality of facilities like toilets, drinking water, electricity and boundary wall.The 22 MEAs, who have been given tablets, have also been told to file pictorial evidence of their visits, including pictures of school/college heads and monitoring officers.

Among these assistants are upper divisional clerks, lower divisional clerks, lab assistants, attendants, naib qasid and lab in charge.“This initiative will help the FDE management, area education officers and other decision-makers take prompt and informed decisions about the respective schools and thus, improving the overall learning environment there,” he said.

The adviser to the PMERP said the school and college heads had already been told to facilitate MEAs during their visits to the respective campuses.He said the mandate of the MEAs was to act as professionals and gather the sought-after information only.

“They (monitoring and evaluation assistants) do not have the authority to go beyond their scope of work. In case of any complaints against their attitude or behaviour, school or colleges heads could lodge complaints with the PMERP through for necessary action,” he said.Mr Ali Raza said the initiative would help further the cause of education in ICT through effective resolution of issues and challenges facing schools and colleges.

Meanwhile, the use of clerical staff for the exercise has taken flak from principals, who regretted instead of supporting and strengthening them to deliver the goods, their performance had been monitored by lower grade employees.

However, a PMERP official rejected the impression insisting neither principals had been overseen by MEAs nor were they answerable to monitoring teams and instead, principals were supposed to cooperate with MEAs in the exercise of a function, which belonged to progress of the state.

He said the MEAs, many holding double master’s degrees in Physics, Economics and Biology, were selected after preliminary interview and that they’d undergone hands-on training.The official said the clerical staff didn’t have enough workload compared to teachers and that the nature of their work was to handle official data and therefore, they’re selected for the school/college monitoring and evaluation.