Shah Nawaz Afridi
Students of government schools of Khyber district are facing shortage of textbooks even more than two months after the end of summer vacations.
Fatima, a student of class V at the Government Girls Middle School Bara told TNN that girls in her class sit in groups of five to read their lessons from a book. In addition to this, she said that they use their notebooks to note teachers’ instructions from books to study them at home.
“We do not have books for all subjects,” she said.
The student said that she only had text books for mathematics and chemistry while other girls have books for other subjects. “We have yet to receive textbooks after our return to schools at the end of summer vacations,” she said.
She said that they spent their summer vacations also without textbooks.
Ayesha, another student of same school said that she also spent her summer vacations without textbooks. “I read my fourth class books, just to keep in touch with my studies,” said, Ayesha, who wants to be a teacher.
On the other hand, Khyber district education office figures show that 60 percent of schools have been provided with textbooks. However, despite this, many students in many schools were facing textbooks shortage.
The figures showed that there were about 115,000 girls students in the district from KG to class XII while they were going to make a demand for five percent more books for the next academic year.
Delayed reconstruction of schools
Zahidullah Afridi, a social worker said provincial government needs to focus on provision of books for the students. He said that many of the area schools even lacked buildings and students were reading in tents. Mr Afridi said that despite lapse of many years, reconstruction of many schools was still in limbo.
Mr Afridi said that thousands of female students were studying in schools of the tehsils and the current situation if continued will undermine the trust of parents in the education system.
He said that those having financial means will get their children enrolled into private schools; however, the poor will suffer mostly.
On the other hand, 5th grader Ayesha said that there were 56 students in her class; however, majority of them have different textbooks and teachers used these books to teach them.
On the other hand, Abdul Ghani Afridi, a ruling Pakistan leader from Bara said that he was in contact with provincial education minister on the issue of book shortages. Mr Ghani said that he will meet the minister in a day or two.
Similarly, he said that the issue of books has also been taken up with the district administration and data has been gathered about required number of books. “We will ensure provision of books to all students,” he said.