PESHAWAR: A government report stated that the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government had failed to reopen as many as 346 closed schools in the last five years, despite claims of prioritising the education sector and enhancing the budget.
According to a local media report, it was stated that the former KP elementary and secondary education minister Atif Khan had repeatedly claimed that as per the promises of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan, education was their top priority.
Similarly, the provincial government more than doubled its budget for education over five years from Rs63 billion to Rs136 billion.
During the initial days of the PTI government, the minister stated that they will focus on reforming and improving the existing facilities.
However, the Independent Monitoring Unit (IMU) Annual School Census Report 2017-18 found that as many as 346 schools in 16 districts of the province have been lying closed for years.
Of these schools, which are either errantly closed or were lying vacant, around 23 were boys schools, 150 were girls schools while 173 schools were co-education schools. These schools, the report stated, have been lying closed for years.
According to the report, Kohistan district had the most schools which were closed with a tally of 132 schools whose doors remain shut. These include seven schools for boys, 49 for girls and 76 co-education schools.
Kohistan was followed by Bannu, where 54 schools, including two for boys, 25 for girls and 27 co-education schools were lying closed.
There were 22 schools which were either closed or non-functional in Lakki Marwat, 20 in Tank, 20 in Hangu, 16 in Abbottabad, 12 in Battagram, eight in Karak, eight in Swat, five in Swabi, four in Bunner, four in Dera Ismail Khan, four in Shangla, two in Charsadda, two in Mansehra, and two in Mardan.