Flood damaged 3,000 Balochistan schools

5,000 of the province’s 15,000 schools operate with single teacher in single room

Syed Ali Shah September 15, 2022


Torrential downpour and subsequent devastating flash floods have inflicted huge damage on the education infrastructure as around 3,000 schools across 26 districts of Balochistan have been destroyed or damaged as per the initial estimates.

This has badly hampered the schooling of a large number of students in public sector who will now be forced to study under open sky without any buildings.

The province is already notorious for its lack of proper education infrastructure and now floods have badly damaged school buildings built in the past seven decades with a snail pace.

“Floods impacted the education of 386,000 students across Balochistan which is not developed and is a backward province,” an officer of the Balochistan Education Department told The Express Tribune on Wednesday.

He requested anonymity since he was not authorized to speak to media.

The Balochistan government twice shut down all private and public schools because of floods and heavy rainfall for 14 days.

According to statistics obtained by The Express Tribune, most of the schools were damaged by floods in the Lasbella district of the province.

A total of 321 school buildings have been damaged in the district as per the official record.

By the same token, floods damaged 204 schools in Quetta, the capital of Balochistan province.

The education department has demanded the Balochistan government to evolve a mechanism for the reconstruction of the damaged schools as a large number of students were dependent on public schools for education.

Balochistan Secretary of Education, Abdul Rauf Baloch has directed all district education officers to assess the damages and prepare a comprehensive report about the affected schools and their impacts on the education of the students.

The total number of public schools across Balochistan is well over 15,000.

The number of schools with a single teacher and one room is over 5,000.

Due to this, the education sector across the province paints a black picture when it comes to the quality of education too.

Flash floods unleashed by torrential rains have swept away dozens of schools in the Naseerabad division, which was completely submerged.

For the last two weeks, the educational institutions in the division are closed.

To save precious time for the students, UNICEF has established dozens of temporary learning centers in Quetta and other parts of Balochistan.

“We have set up dozens of schools in flood-hit areas,” an official of UNICEF said. He requested anonymity because he was also not authorized to speak to the media.

There are still no arrangements from the government in this regard.

Published in The Express Tribune, September 15th, 2022.


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