Students in a primary school in the village of Diyo in Union Council (UC) Betgali were studying without most basic facilities such as furniture, and were compelled to take classes sitting on the floor in biting chill.
The Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (KP) education department seemed to have turned a blind eye to the condition of the only school in the far-flung area.
Former Nazim of Betgali UC Shah Nawaz Khan, ex-Naib Nazim Wakeel Khan and others told The Express Tribune said that schools have not been uplifted in the backward areas of K-P.
They said the condition of the school has burst the bubble of the educational emergency in the province.
They said that the school is situated at a five-hour distance from Haripur city and officials of the education department do not visit the school because of its being in a mountainous area.
Locals said that over 200 students are enrolled in the primary school while the decrepit condition of the building was worth seeing.
They said that they tried to draw the attention of the local committee Nazim and the councillor towards the issue, but the building’s condition has not changed in a decade.
They said that the temperature was dropping and minor students were facing extreme difficulties due to the current condition of the school’s structure.
They said that the lawmakers visit the area only at the time of elections and do not return until the next elections.
They said desks and chairs in the school were in a dilapidated condition, while the school lacked basic facilities as well.
Former local government officials said that the provincial government has received funds from international donor agencies in the name of education but in turn has invested nothing to provide basic facilities.
Former Nazim Betgali Shahnawaz Khan said the ceiling of the school starts dripping when it rains and the school administration has to cover the roof using clothes.
He said that the education department has received funds from the PTC programme, but this primary school has not been covered in it.
The locals have demanded the government to repair the school building and construct new rooms at the earliest, along with providing furniture.
On the other hand, officials claimed that a summary for the release of funds for the school will be prepared soon after receiving a feasible maintenance report from the principal.
Published in The Express Tribune, November 9th, 2021.