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Alarming: 79% girls, 69% boys quit school in erstwhile Fata

EMIS report reveals high shortage of teachers and other facilities in schools in the erstwhile Fata where thousands of student quit schools.

Peshawar — Overall 73% students including 69% boys and 79% girls, quit schools at the primary education in the erstwhile Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata), an Education Management Information System (EMIS) report said.

The report showed, Only one of every five primary school girls could continue their education from primary middle level school.

The 102-page report of EMIS says, situation in upper school level is also alarming. Girls dropout rate in middle and higher education level is 50%.

The statistical report compiled by EMIS, directorate of education of newly merged tribal districts says, the highest dropout rate was recorded in North Waziristan tribal district where overall 63% including 73% girls stopped going to schools.

Currently, total 6,77,157 students have enrolled in 5,890 government schools in the erstwhile Fata. These schools are vulnerable to lack of facilities including electricity, drinking water and toilets.

Under Rs 12 billion education and Rs 5 billion development budget, only 43% schools have electricity, 45.5% have drinking water, 45% have toilets and 70% schools have boundary walls.

On the other side, the schools are also facing teacher’s shortage issues. The number of teachers was 20,709 in 2009-10 which has reduced now to 18,621, the reports reveals.

About 5,000 teacher and technical staff positions are still vacant, EMIS officials said, adding that there is also an unofficial ban on new recruitment in the erstwhile Fata.

There is a need of some 22,000 teachers but the existing strength of teachers is 18,621. This means there is only one teacher for every 59 students.

The report does not tell any specific reason behind this alarming dropout situation in the tribal districts. However, other officials say, one of the main reasons is the “unqualified and outdated teachers”, who are not able to teach the modern syllabus in the schools.

War on militancy and local’s displacement due to the military operations are another reason behind the higher dropout rates. Over 1,500 schools were destroyed during the last one decade.

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