LAHORE - Punjab Education Foundation (PEF) is playing a leading role in achieving the targets of education-promotion programs espoused by the Punjab government, PEF chairman Engineer Qamarul Islam Raja said on Saturday.

“Keeping in view the educational needs of the rising number of deserving students, free educational programs are being further extended by the foundation,” Raja said while briefing the media about role of PEF in promotion of free school education at the grassroots.

Maintaining that PEF is the most successful model of gratis schooling in which state provides support in shape of monthly fee and text books to the needy, he said that it had also encouraged and promoted the beneficial role of the low-cost private schools. “Our public private partnership model is best in the region,” he said.

“PEF has designed and implemented a coherent system for its four thousand partnering schools so that they could give quality education to the 1.6 million students. We have also envisaged one-button payment system for our partners so that their monthly dues could be paid timely. E-attendance for partner school students is also being introduced after students’ information system which is a computerized repository of students’ necessary data,” he continued.

He disclosed that it has been decided that, in future, all schools would be opened through ‘new school program’ of the foundation in Punjab. In the first phase, 225 such partnering schools are being planned at sites specified by the schools education department. This decision has been taken keeping in view of PEF’s cost-effectiveness and ability to best serve the ‘have-nots’ at their doorsteps. “These children would have been ignored otherwise,” he maintained.

Raja also said that PEF was corruption-free as well as most-efficient in meeting targets of millennium development goals. “PEF will continue to play leading role in Punjab Education sector roadmap program,” he told the media.