Upper Dir school opens eight years after flood

Childern were studying in tent school after 2010 torrents had destroyed the facility


Our Correspondent March 30, 2019
View of the reconstructed school in Upper Dir. PHOTO: EXPRESS

PESHAWAR: The joy and excitement of students knew no bounds as classes at the reconstructed school in the remote Nehag valley in Upper Dir district resumed after eight years.

The Government Primary School for Boys in Nehag valley in Upper Dir was destroyed in the 2010 flash floods which caused widespread devastation in the mountainous and one of the neglected districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

Provincial Reconstruction, Rehabilitation and Settlement Authority (PaRRSA) under Relief, Rehabilitation &Settlement Department (RR&SD) has recently completed the reconstruction work on the schools building. Classes at the facility were resumed recently.

Located at the height of about 6,500 feet, the school is the lone source of education for the boys and girls pupils of one of the most neglected mountainous Nehagdara. The area is part of the provincial constituency PK-11.

The school was damaged in the 2010 flash floods and the Education Department had established a tent school in the playground of Higher Secondary School (HSS) for the students to continue their studies.

In 2017, PDMA-PaRRSA had started the reconstruction work of the school with support of international donor Agency, seven years later after its destruction and completed the development work on the two-story building in a short spam of over one year time.

Facilities like that of electricity, drinking water and separate washrooms for teachers and students were constructed at the building.

Head Teacher of the school Sheer Ahmad, said the school was handed over to them and they resumed classes at the new building.

He said that around 370 students including boys and girls are getting education in the newly built model school. “Students off private schools have also enrolled at the school as it has a lot of space to accommodate more students and better environment,” he added.

Zahid Shah, a grade-IV student, said that he was excited to study at the newly built school as it was hard to get education at tents.

“This building has all the basic amenities. Here i get the opportunity met new students and make new friends. I will definitely continue my study here,” he commented.

Seema Bibi, a grade-V student also expressed pleasure over getting the opportunity to study at a proper building. “It was my dream to study in proper building. I am glad that the school building was reconstructed and has improved education facilities,” she added.

She thanked the PaRRSA for the reconstruction of their school.

PaRRSA with the financial support of International Donor (KPRP) has reconstructed 128 schools damaged or destroyed during the insurgency and flood affected areas in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

It said that 82 school buildings had been reconstructed in Swat, 12 in Buner, 24 in Lower and three in Upper Dir districts. The schools reconstructed in Upper Dir included Government Primary School (GPS) Nehag, GPS Chiragali and Govt High School for Girls (GGHS) Ganorai.

Representative from Education Department Dir Upper, said that PaRRSA is reconstructing 11 schools in Upper Dir in which  three have been rebuilt and resumed while work on the remaining eight is in different stages of construction. He said that he was informed that PaRRSA reconstructed standard schools buildings with attached facilities which helps boosting education ratio as more and more students are being enrolled in these facilities day by the day.

“These reconstructed schools are also provided furniture and school bags to the students,” he informed.

Published in The Express Tribune, March 30th, 2019.

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