129 FATA schools’ re-opening planned

Islamabad

The government has decided to re-open 129 Basic Education Community Schools (BECS) in North and South Waziristan which were temporarily closed due to operation. The objective of BECS was to strengthen non-formal approach to supplement formal education and around 1061 BECS have been established in Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) since launching of the project, sources at the Federal Education Division said.
Giving agency-wise break up, the sources said 254 BECS (schools) were established in Mohmand, 137 in Khyber, 116 in Kurram, 8 in Frontier Region (FR) Tank, 33 in Orakzai, 212 in Bajour, 36 in FR Bannu, 25 in FR Dera Ismail Khan, 125 in North Waziristan Agency and 115 in South Waziristan Agency. Similarly, the agency-wise break up of students enrolled in BECS showed that 11,738 were enrolled in Mohmand, 7,401 in Khyber, 5,457 in Kurram, 365 in FR Tank, 1,552 in Orakzai, 10,318 in Bajour, 390 in FR Bannu, 936 in FR D.I.Khan, 3,081 in North Waziristan Agency and 1,522 in South Waziristan Agency.
Highlighting salient features of BECS, the sources said of the total, 80 per cent of teachers and almost 60 per cent of students were females. Currently, 12,304 BECS schools were being run across the country with enrollment of 493,972 students, they added. The sources said BECS schools were based on non-formal basic education system, having a single teacher, single home based room for school (class KG to V) where premises was provided free of cost by the community.
The education, they said, was free in each BECS school and 30 learners of age group 4-16 years were mandatory. A single teacher was responsible for all the classes by adopting multi-grade teaching method using school’s curriculum. The sources said at the end of grade five, the students were allowed admission in grade six in formal schools after conducting of examination.
They said teachers honorarium, utility bills, teaching learning material and text books were provided by the government. Mostly female teachers were appointed with minimum qualification of Matric (SSC) on fixed honorarium of Rs 5,000 and Rs 1,000 utility charges per month.—APP

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