LAHORE: The data collected under the Literacy and Numeracy Drive (LND) system developed by the Punjab Information Technology Board (PITB) in collaboration with School Education Department for quality teaching and learning in Punjab was made public on Friday. The data was revealed by PITB Chairman Dr Umar Saif. Speaking on the occasion, Dr Saif said LND system had helped eliminate ghost schools, teachers and fake admission. This data was generated from tablet-based quizzes for grade-3 students from across the Punjab schools. Dr Saif said that a few countries in the world have had such system to measure the learning outcome, which had been initiated in the Punjab by random visits of monitoring and evaluation assistants (MEAs) to collect real time data. For the purpose, he said that the PITB implemented a low-cost, tablet-PC based student assessment application, which was used by school monitoring officers during their monthly visits to each school. The assessment app was linked to an extensive question bank and each question was tagged with the relevant student learning outcomes. He added that the system also recorded the missing facilities like boundary walls, washrooms, water and electricity at schools, which had overall much improved. The particulars of 14 million students, their parents and 325,000 teachers were verified from the National Database and Registration Authority NADRA through their computerised national identity cards (CNICs). “About 329,000 students are assessed monthly. Almost 6.7 million assessments have been conducted by MEAs as of now. The data is shared with education administrators via an online dashboard and SMS-alerts.” He said that a plan was also in the pipeline to monitor private schools’ education quality to have comprehensive data of literacy, quality teaching and learning in collaboration with the management of these institutions. However, online school complaints system for public schools could also be used for the private schools, he added. This assessment platform could be extended for any grade level, as and when the School Education Department decides to measure student learning outcomes for other grades as well. Published in Daily Times, March 31st 2018.