Education – Karachi

Public schools which Afghan refugees attend include Government Primary School Boys & Girls, particularly Abidabad, Banaras, Gulistan Johar, Gulshan-e-Iqbal, Machar colony, Malir, Shah Faisal, Shahdaman Town, Songal and the Citizen Foundation Schools in Ittihad town and Metrovil.

Private schools which are popular with Afghan refugees include:

  • Al-Ahmed Grammar School in Orangi town,
  • Al-Qadeer Children Academy in Baldia town,
  • Ali Public School Camp in Jadid,
  • Crescent Public School in Ittihad town,
  • Course Wahdate School,
  • Falcon Grammer School,
  • Ghazi Amanullah School,
  • Iqra public School in Kemari town,
  • Khyber School Camp in Jadid,
  • Sonrise Public School in Orangi town,
  • Syed Jamaluddin Afghani School,
  • Urooj Public School in Korangi

In Gadap town, there are also several schools specifically for Afghans, which follow the Afghan curriculum.

A number of projects within the RAHA programme have helped to improve local education facilities, including:

  • Renovation of existing buildings and construction of new classrooms, washrooms and boundry walls in government schools in union councils 4 and 5 in Gadap town – an area in which approximately 50% of Afghans in Karachi are thought to reside.
  • Books, stationary and sporting materials were provided to refugee schools following the Afghan curriculum in union councils 4 and 5 in Gadap town. These schools also benefited from teacher training (male and female teachers).

It is usually not possible for Afghan students to gain admission to government education facilities as in Karachi, these tend to only be available to the host community. These schools are also often substantial distances from the refugee communities with only limited public transport available.

As many Afghan families live in extreme poverty, they cannot afford to send their children to private schools instead and are therefore only able to send their children to one of the Afghan schools in Karachi, which are heavily oversubscribed. Therefore, enrolment rates are thought to be particularly low (60% of boys and just 40% of girls enrolled in primary schools).

The following issues have been observed in Karachi:

  • While the Sindh government has agreed that refugees should be admitted to government schools without prejudice, greater advocacy with the government will be required to achieve this in practise.
  • Community run schools have proved popular with Afghan refugees, but are oversubscribed and require support in terms of logistics, the construction of additional rooms as well as training of teachers.
  • Establishment of education committees at community level that can take ownership of the education issues within each community.