When Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Government took charge of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) in 2013, education was defined as a key priority and Muhammad Atif Khan was given this important responsibility. The province was at the forefront of the war on terror with its people riddled with the trauma of terrorism all across KP and neighboring Federally Administrated Tribal Areas(FATA). Schools were bombed in many districts, teachers and students’ attendance were a record low and public education infrastructure was not viable fora nurturing educational environment. The situation deteriorated further when the Army Public School incident happened in 2014. But then education was taken as a top priority for five years.Education budgets were increased by 200 percent from Rs. 64 Billion in 2013 to Rs. 136 Billion in 2017.Finally after the successful implementation of reforms in schools, the KP government comfortably and proudly announced the shift of more than 151,000 students from private to government schools on the basis of an independent survey. The Education Department installed interactive white boards, established computer labs and play areas in schools which uplifted government schools to far better standards than private. This was in lieu with Article 25-A of the constitution, where access to free and quality education is considered the right of every Pakistani child. During 2013-18, the KP government undertook reforms to improve teachers attendance through the establishment of Independent Monitoring Unit (IMU) and the introduction of rewards and penalty mechanism in which deduction was made from salaries of absent teachers. As a result, teachers’ attendance increased in public schools from a record low of 70 percent in 2013 to 90 percent in 2018. The Government attempted school-based recruitment and time-scale policies for teachers which were rejected by teacher unions just before the 2018 elections, however, it is likely that the PTI government would implement those unfulfilled promises in this tenure in consultations with unions.In five years’ time, the KP Government provided more than 85,000 facilities to schools and invested a record Rs 29 billion on these facilitiesMajor priority was given to the uplifting of Infrastructure in public schools.Since thousands of schools were without basic facilities such as water, toilets, boundary walls, and electricity. In five years’ time, the KP Government provided more than 85,000 facilities to schools and invested a record Rs. 29 Billion on these facilities. In 2017, Alif Ailaan ranked KP number one amongst all provinces in terms of primary school infrastructure.These facilities helped in improvement in enrolment and retention rates of students especially female students which were largely out of schools due to the absence of basic facilities in public schools and cultural constraints. Of 23 million out of school children all over the country – 2.5 million are in KP, the majority are female therefore improvement in infrastructure is now resulting in an increase in girls enrolment rates. Parents who were reluctant to send girls to schools due to lack of boundary walls and toilets are now ready to enroll their girls as their confidence in government reforms has improved while on the other hand girls students receive stipends which helps them in meeting school related expenses. Reforms in textbooks and revision of books from grade 1 to 10 were another key achievement of the KP Government. Changes in textbooks were introduced to eliminate an overemphasis on rote learning. The textbooks reforms incorporated science, technology, engineering, and mathematics in an interdisciplinary approach.Moreover the quality of an education system cannot exceed the quality of its teachers. The starting point to ensure the quality of teaching force in an education system is to devise recruiting mechanisms that sift the best from the rest. The KP Government hired more than 55,000 teachers in five years without a single allegation of political hiring. Majority of newly hired teachers in government schools are female, however, the number of female teachers are higher in private schools compare to public schools. KP government in 2013 approved 70:30 ratio of female and male in the education system, however, its implementation is slow. According to the 70:30 ratio, of every 100 new schools, 70 will be built for girls. Yet again, a lot needs to be done as female teachers amount to only 40 percent of the total teachers in KP.With the PTI government in Federal, KP and Punjab this is no less than an ideal opportunity for experience sharing and increase in inter-provincial coordination on education matters.The writer is a media and communications professional. He can be contacted at email@example.com or Twitter: zia051Published in Daily Times, August 18th 2018.