Education – Islamabad and Rawalpindi

Afghan refugees tend to attend just four schools in Islamabad and Rawalpindi (2 girls and 2 boys).

There have been several education projects in the RAHA programme in Islamabad and Rawalpindi including:

  • Rehabilitation of schools including the construction of 7 additional classrooms, toilets, construction of boundary walls and drains
  • Formation of community organizations, revitalisation of parent teacher committees and formation of O&M committees.
  • Capacity building trainings for the parent teacher committees, community organizations and O&M Committees
  • Construction of 5 additional rooms (with furniture) and 8 latrines at GGHS Khayaban e Sir Syed in UC 11 Sector 4B.
  • Construction of 2 additional rooms, 1 multipurpose examination hall (with furniture) and 6 latrines at GBHS Sector 4B in UC 11.
  • Rehabilitation of GGHS Khayaban e Sir Syed in UC 12.

ICMC refer children of Afghan refugees and asylum seekers to local primary schools.

It is usually not possible for Afghan students to gain admission to government education facilities as in Islamabad and Rawalpindi, these tend to only be available to the host community. The enrolment contraints are particularly serious for the 9th and 10th grades when students normally study for the board exams.

The alternatives to these government schools are unfortunately very limited, with just a single Afghan registered school in Islamabad, which as a result is overcrowded and has inadequate facilities.

Greater advocacy with the Federal government in Pakistan is required to try to increase the admission of Afghan children in government schools.

Even if there were spaces in one of the government schools, some in the Afghan community would still be unwilling to send their children to these schools because of the differences between the Pakistani and Afghan curriculums. The incompatibility between the two curriculums becomes a particular issue if refugee families were to repatriate voluntarily back to Afghanistan as their children might need to retake one or even two years of school in Afghanistan.