Rawalpindi :Although an amount of Rs2.449 billion has already been spent on dilapidated school buildings, but 153 buildings of government educational institutions remain threat to students, teachers and other staff member.
In 2015, district education department had declared 270 educational institutions buildings in Rawalpindi dangerous which had to be repaired by the provincial government in phases. Punjab government also ordered to provide IT Labs to all 425 government high schools in Rawalpindi. It will be zero tolerance if concerned authority failed to establish IT Labs in all 425 high schools during 2017-18.
District Education Authority (DEA) Assistant Director (Planning) Saleem Raza told ‘The News’ that construction work of dilapidated school buildings is continuing. “Construction work will be completed this fiscal year, he claimed. He said that they have already finished construction work worth Rs2.449 billion in Rawalpindi district. But, around 153 buildings are still dangerous which would be cleared during this fiscal year, he added.
He pointed out 36 dangerous buildings in Rawalpindi including 46 in Gujar Khan, 20 in Kallar Syedan, 10 in Taxila, 18 in Murree, 10 in Kotli Satyan and 13 in Kahuta tehsils. He also assured establishment of IT Labs in all 425 high schools during this year as per government of Punjab orders. “We have also provided 295 toilets and 375 water sources in government schools,” he claimed.
Saleem Raza said that the provincial government had asked the education department to identify dilapidated buildings of the educational institutions in the district which need immediate repairs.
In 2015, the Punjab government had released only Rs250 million against the education department`s demand of Rs2 billion. The provincial government has allocated Rs8 billion during this fiscal year for the repair of dilapidated buildings in 36 districts of the province.
According to the survey of education department, 391 buildings were found dangerous but the government asked to reduce the number as per 2014 survey in which 257 building were in dilapidated condition and after the discussion, the department sought financial help for repair of 270 buildings in the district and of them, 23 needed immediate attention.
The condition of Government Jamia Islamia High School, Murree Road; Government Faizul Islam School, Trunk Bazaar; Pahalvi School, Faizabad; Mission High School, Raja Bazaar was bad. But, the condition of these school buildings is now better after renovation work, Assistant Director (Planning) Saleem Raza told ‘The News’.
It is worth mentioning here that scores of poor children in Rawalpindi are yet facing lack of basic facilities in their schools. Despite government’s stress that every child has right to education, the real picture of government school buildings, especially in the old city areas, is dismal in addition to classes having poor teacher-student ratio. There are total 1823 government schools in Rawalpindi district included primary, middle, high and higher secondary.