QUETTA: The Balochistan Education Department, with the financial support of Unicef, has set up 220 centres under the Accelerated Learning Programme in different districts of the province.
These centres have been set up mostly in areas which have no government school. Around 8,000 students are getting free education in these centres.
The programme seeks to provide primary education to out-of-school children within three years as opposed to usual six years to overcome the age gap created because of school years missed by these children. The main objective behind the launch of this programme was to make sure that the time of overage children did not go to waste.
A worrying aspect of the current state of affairs is that most of the out-of-school children in Balochistan are girls.
One of the centres under this programme has been established in New Kahan area of Quetta in which 91 boys and girls are enrolled.
According to parents of the students, before the establishment of this centre in the area their children spent most of their time picking up trash, but now they were getting education. They can speak and write Urdu and are also being taught English and mathematics.
Secretary of Secondary Education Sher Khan Bazai visited the centre in New Kahan and distributed school bags among students.
Speaking on the occasion, he said that the children in the centre were being provided free education along with books and other material. He said steps were being taken to provide more facilities to students in these centres.
The secretary said support was being provided to these students under the Education Support Programme. He said full training was being imparted to teachers of these centres through continuous professional development programme to improve the performance of these centres.
Published in Dawn, April 16th, 2021