PESHAWAR, Pakistan: The digitalization of public sector libraries has been started in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in order to facilitate students and researchers of the far flung areas of the province in attaining studies as well as research works.
Higher Education Department KPK government senior official told media on Monday that under Annual Development Programme (ADP) the project of ‘Scanning and Digitalization of Public Libraries (SDPL) was approved and nine libraries of KPK were linked with international libraries with an objective to provide latest information viz a viz education to the students.
The Government was also moving towards digitalization and computerization of science laboratories in colleges and universities for promotion of science education, the official said, adding Digital Science Labs (DSLs) were setup in six colleges including on each in DI Khan, Bannu, Mardan, Swat and two in Abbottabad.
Work on nine other approved DSLs would start soon which after completion would save time of students and teachers besides avoid use of chemicals wastage, the official said, adding these positive initiatives would help promote scientific education in the province.
An Endowment Fund of Rs30 million for students of BS programme was established for provision of monthly scholarships to talented students, adding another Endowment Fund of Rs1000 million was setup for provision of merit scholarships to KPK students studying in prestigious institutions outside of the province.
A Faculty Development Support Programme (FDSP) was also approved with allocation of Rs96 million to provide financial support to teachers studying in M Phil and PhD programs, the official said,
To address the travelling problems of girl students, the official said commuter coaches were provided to 89 colleges in the first phase to offer pick and drop facility to students in the province, adding this facility would be extended to other degree colleges in near future. The official said this initiative has made students punctual and abolished absenteeism.
Higher Education Teachers Training Academy (HETTA) has been established in Hayatabad Peshawar and promotion of teachers would be linked with successful completion of training from this institute on the pattern of civil servants. This would help enhance professional competence of academicians.
A College Council with representatives of all stakeholders was setup for repair and construction works in colleges to avoid lapse of funds and chances of irregularities in construction works, the official said.
To harmonize our educational degrees with international standards where four years Bachelor of Sciences program is in practice, the official said BS-4 years program in 38 colleges was started where students enrollment touched 17240 with per semester charges of about Rs3000 against universities Rs35000.
The official added that numbers of universities in KPK which were only five in 2001 has jumped to 22 in 2015 including three universities one each in Swabi, Mardan and Nowshera were established.
In 2001, the numbers of libraries in KPK were four that was now raised up to 14. Work on four libraries in Buner, Charsadda, Manshera and Ghazai Haripur was underway, the official said adding public library would be setup in every district of the province.
Out of 68 schemes in ADP for higher education, the official said 40 were ongoing while 28 were new including 16 approved and two referred to competent forums for considerations.