Provincial Minister for Literacy & Non-formal Basic Education Raja Rashid Hafeez, appreciated JICA and PCTB for their support in developing ALP (Primary) curriculum, textbooks and materials for teachers. He said that this support has equipped the department to address the issue of out-of-school children. He also appreciated additional secretary, project directors, and technical team of his department who maintained a productive liaison with JICA and PCTB and made everything possible. He also said that the collaboration with JICA has been extremely useful and that the department would like to extend this partnership further in developing accelerated learning programme for elementary level in Punjab and strengthen the Non-Formal Education further. Today, Literacy and Non-Formal Basic Education Department, Government of Punjab, in collaboration with Advancing Quality Alternative Learning (AQAL) project of JICA, launched curriculum, textbooks and materials for teachers under Primary level Accelerated Learning Programme (ALP). The ALP (Primary) will offer primary cycle in 32 months and particularly address the learning needs of overage and dropped out out-of-school children in Punjab. Launching of the textbooks held today at the office of the Literacy and Non-Formal Basic Education Department, Government of Punjab. Minister for Literacy & NFBE, Raja Rashid Hafeez, graced the occasion as Chief Guest, while Secretary for Literacy & NFBE, Ms Sumaira Samad and Managing Director for Punjab Curriculum & Textbook Board (PCTB), Rai Manzoor Nasir represented their departments.
Talking on the occasion, Ms Chiho Ohashi, Chief Advisor, AQAL-JICA and Abid Gill, Deputy Chief Advisor AQAL-JICA explained key features of the textbooks and materials for the teachers. They said that the curriculum, textbooks and materials for teachers are condensed and integrated scientifically that combine learning outcomes of various subjects into similar themes and employs interactive classroom activities that build on prior learning and encourage the application of the contents in daily life. Therefore, the curriculum and materials are relevant to the culture and context of the learners and respond to their daily life needs to keep them motivated and continue learning. Ms Sumaira Samad, Secretary, Literacy & NFBE, shared that her department is feeling proud to develop its own product that specifically targets overage out-of-school children. She reiterated that the curriculum and textbooks will help the department address the long-awaited learning needs of out of school children especially in remote rural areas and with special emphasis on girls. She appreciated the efforts of the experts of Literacy & NFBE department, JICA and the PCTB who worked days and nights and accomplished this much-needed task. Rai Manzoor Nasir, MD, PCTB, assured his continued support in improving the textbooks and develop more textbooks when required.