Girls await repair of school
By Mudassir Raja
RAWALPINDI: The students of Government Girls Primary School, Dhamial, in the city’s outskirts, are forced to study in the open as a portion of the dilapidated roof of classroom collapsed 20 days ago injuring nine students.
A visit to the school, ten kilometers south of Saddar, witnessed the girls sitting in the small and dusty courtyard of the school building, set up in 1942 in a gurdwarah. Nine students of second grade were injured when portion of the roof collapsed.
Fortunately none of them was injured seriously. But a teacher, requesting anonymity, feared that the students may not be fortunate next time if the crumbling building was not repaired immediately.
“The school needs immediate attention of authorities as we have time and again written to concerned office for repair of old rooms and construction of few more classrooms, but nothing has happened,” she said. Parents are also worried about safety of their girls but have no other option as there is no other government school nearby, she added.
On September 19 the principal wrote to the ‘higher authorities’ about the precarious condition of the building and conveyed concern of the parents. “If the patch-up work is not done quickly, it will be hard for girls to sit in the open during winter,” the teacher said.
Discussions with area people and some officials of education department revealed that there were number of schools with damaged buildings in the district as the education department did not have enough finances to repair them.
The district education department gets Rs10 million for providing missing facilities in schools in every district.
But the money is not adequate to meet deficiencies in Rawalpindi. The other usual way of reconstructing damaged buildings is using special funds of the MPA or MNA, who use their funds on priority basis for this purpose.
Every year the education department prioritises schools for repair, using available funds with the help of Project Monitoring and Implementation Unit of the government.
Executive District Officer (EDO) Education Malik Mohammad Ashraf said an official recently visited the school and submitted the report about the required repair work.
He had written to the secretary schools urging immediate release of money for the repair work as the winter season is approaching.