The overwhelming revolution caused by Information and Communication Technologies
have ubiquitous impact on all the global societies in the world. It has universally
influenced almost every aspect of human life, be it Trade, Services, Manufacturing,
Government, Education, Research, Entertainment, Culture, Defense, Communications
etc. It is undoubtedly known as one of the prominent determinants and yardsticks
of progress of nations, communities and individuals. Role of IT in development and
progress of a country cannot be over-emphasized. Nowadays IT Education is necessity
of the time and no nation can do without it. It has now become an essential ingredient
of progress and prosperity of a society. Information Technology as a tool provides
numerous opportunities to overcome historical disabilities and ensures leapfrog
to attain a position of economic strength and respect in the comity of nations.
Chief Minister Punjab, Mian Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif, initiated the Punjab IT Labs
Project in Government schools to overcome the Digital Divide between the public
and private sector schools. This project was completed in a record time of 110 days
and over 4286 schools were covered in this project. This initiative will revolutionize
the education sector and the new generation will play an important role in the progress
and development of the country with adequate IT education. In Punjab IT lab project,
every school is equipped with 3 desktop PCs and 12 virtual desktops with powered
by Microsoft technologies , high speed internet connection and state of the art
hardware solutions from companies like Inbox, Siemens, PEL, N-Computing, PTCL, New
Horizon. All the labs are also equipped with cooling and power backup solutions.
The project was executed and monitored by Microsoft technologies of project monitoring
& collaboration with the assistance of M/s. Hospex Consulting Services, The Microsoft
Partner & Microsoft Team – moreover has provided extensive trainings to master trainers
to enhance their skill set & teaching methodologies to meet international standards.
Project is a success story and completed in record time because of visionary administration
of Chief Minister Punjab and His team.
The Objectives of the Project are:
- To equip Govt. High & Higher Secondary Schools with the Computer Labs for I.T awareness,
I.T enablement, development of I.T skills and introduction of Computer Science among
the students in Secondary and Higher Secondary Schools. In this way overwhelming
majority of the High /Higher Secondary schools will be covered.
- To help the country in identifying students with aptitude for I.T. learning during
Secondary/Higher Secondary education. This would offer better opportunities to the
nation to select the best talent amongst a large population base.
Number of Schools
- The IT labs have been established in 4286 Government High / Higher Secondary Schools
across all 36 districts of the Province.
Total Investment / Savings:
- An amount of Rs. 6068.763 million allocated for the project, while the revised cost
came down to Rs. 4787.590 million
- Saving of Rs. 1281.173 million.
Hardware provided to each Lab:
- 1 Server
- 3 Desktops
- 15 Terminals
- 1 Split type Air Conditioner (1.5 tons)
- 1 UPS (3 KV)
- 1 Printer
- 3 N-Computing Kits
- 16 Tables and 30 Computer Chairs
Software provided to each Lab:
- Microsoft Windows 2008 Server Std Edition (Licensed)
- Microsoft Windows Server 2008 Std client Access (Licensed)
- Windows Terminal Services (CALS)
- Microsoft Office 2007 Professional (MS Word, MS Outlook, MS Excel, MS Access and
MS PowerPoint, etc) (Licensed)
- Microsoft Forefront Client Security AntiVirus, (Licensed)
- Media Kits for each Lab (MS Windows 2008 Server, Office 2007 Pro , MS Forefront
(Antivirus) and N-Computing V-Space Software)
- All labs fully covered under warranty and managed services for an extended period
of three years i.e. up to 31-12-2012
Salient Features of the Project:
- Project for establishment of 4286 labs was completed in record time
of 6 months while actual deployment was done in 110 days
- Saving of more than 20% funds allocated for the project without
compromising on quality
- Over 4000 new I.T. Teachers are being recruited creating new employment opportunities.
- Over 10,000 teachers have been trained
- Licensed software from Microsoft Corporation
- Labs will be centrally connected 24/7 and monitored online for a period of 3 years
- Transparent mechanism adopted for complete process
- Payments made after verification by the locally constituted independent Inspection
- 5% of the labs inspected by the concerned DCO in each district
- 10% of the labs being inspected by CMIT
- 25% of the labs shall be inspected again through a third party in the interest of
transparency. Process of selection of firm for this task is underway.
Expected Benefits and Impacts of the Project:
- PTCL to upgrade internet connection at all the 4286 school sites to DSL within a
period of 18 months.
- Hundreds of long term and short term jobs created through setting
up of local offices of the System Integrators in Punjab
- Beginning of drive against software piracy
- Foundation of a silent revolution
- More than 3.4 million High School students shall benefit each year
- Treasures of knowledge just one click away from the students due to Internet
- Fundamental changes in conventional teaching at government schools
- Will bring about a change in mindset of both teachers and students.
- Bridging of the digital divide
- Promotion of IT culture among all stakeholders
- Project can be upgraded and integrated with other similar projects like online school
management, learning management, digital libraries and databases etc.
Recruitment of IT Teachers:
- It was outside the purview of the Project; the process of recruitment of IT Teachers
for all IT labs has been undertaken by the respective district governments independently
through a transparent process; 3400 teachers recruited so far. However, recruitment
is still not complete in some districts because of litigation and court cases.
- Introduction to Computer Basics – covering computer and common computer terminology
- Introduction to networks, computer performance, operating systems and features
- Introduction to Internet and worldwide web – introduction to internet, types of
internet connections, browsers, bandwidth, internet surfing and messaging etc.
- Introduction to productivity programmes – word processors, spreadsheet, presentation
programmes, database programmes etc.
- Introduction to computer security and privacy – protecting computer and users from
security threats and computer ethics
- Communication at “Live@edu”
Utility of the offered Courses:
- IT enablement of more than 3.4 million students passing out from High / Higher Secondary
Schools each year
- Help promote introduction of compulsory subject of computer science from Class 6
to Class 8 as per Government decision
- Help promote e-learning and e-content development in the educational system
- Live@edu service from Microsoft will be available to students,
teachers and administrators for online communication and interaction