Munaj Gul Muhammad
Turbat: Maah, 11, gets up earlier than the sun-raise and takes her father’s camels to the fields. Her father accompanies her with a flock of goats and sheep. They both spend all day in fields and head home when the sunsets.
Maah lives in Siddag (Siddag is a very small village with a very small population in Dasht Kunchiti, Turbat. She (Maah) is a very talented child with a very sharp mind and sadly she is out of school in the twenty-first century. Her eyes shed tears when she confronts the school-going children into school in gleaning education.
Since her birth, she has not received an education. She wishes to be enrolled in a school, but poverty has blocked her ways to get an education.
Maheen, a student at the University of Turbat, says, ” I have seen legion females in my village who are out-of-school by dint of poverty and lack of schools along with the fundamental facilities. Before I put a question, she cites, ” I myself know a myriad of girls who work in the fields with their family members at a very young age besides reaping the benefits of their hard work of education.”
Other than promises to improve the education sector of Balochistan, there is nothing. Albeit, the province has the highest number of out-of-school children in Pakistan. Besides this, the province, too, has at least 1,800 non-functional schools. This is why many school-aged children are seen out-of-school and their dreams are crushed out.
Hawa is another young child who has not been enrolled in a school since her birth. She wishes to get admission to a school in her village, but her luck doesn’t support her to complete her childhood wish.
Hawa, 12, belongs to Kolahoo, Tump ( Kolahoo is a small village in district Kech). It was the year 2017, she stayed up all night chatting with her parents to enroll her in the Primary Girls School of Kolahoo, but they (her parents) did not hear a single word of her. She says, ” I awakened all the night and chatted with the bright moon and complained to God, but all in vain. Till today, when I see the children leaving for schools, I cry hard, and at last, I console myself in saying that having access to nifty education is the basic right to every citizen other than me.”
There are hundreds of thousands of such unreported stories about out-of-school children owing to honor and lack of go-to platforms. Getting the dropouts back into school remains a long haul in the province until and unless schooling is accessible to all.
60 to 70 percent of children in the province are out-of-school according to a report by UNICEF. Among which, 78% of girls and 67% of boys of school-going age are out-of-school, the sole reason why Balochistan always has a handful number of out of school children is that Balochistan governments-in-rule has always snubbed the decades-long education emergency.
Nazir Jan, 35, a resident of Kolahoo says, ” Many females are out-of-school in the village (Kolahoo) and the prime reason behind the high drop-out rates of students is the dismal state of education, expensive fee structure and the government’s disinterest towards bringing improvements in the education sector.” Before I put a question, he says, ” the constitution of 1973 of Pakistan in the Article 25-A says that the State shall provide free and compulsory education to all children of the age of five to sixteen years in such manner as may be determined by law. But the implementation of laws in the province is a long cry.”
It pinpoints the fact that the province has yet to acknowledge the importance of education to achieve an important triumph against the deep-rooted issue. Analogously, having access to basic quality education remains the topmost priority of any government since enrolment at schools will not boost up until the crises related to the deteriorated education system are dealt with properly in the province and taking adequate measures to make education affordable and accessible for all citizens.
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