Bangladesh to allow no NGO school in Rohingya camps without permission

Ershad Kamol | Published: 00:02, Feb 14,2020 | Updated: 00:32, Feb 14,2020


Primary and mass education minister Md Zakir Hossain on Thursday at a programme on the education of Rohingya and host community children in Cox’s Bazar asked the NGOs to take permission before operating education centres at the Rohingya camps.

‘They must take permission from the responsible government agencies to run education centres at the camps as we need to know what they are teaching or doing at the camps,’ Zakir told New Age.

The government has decided to provide only non-formal education to the Rohingya children, equivalent  to grade three, under which they would be taught basic mathematics, English and the Burmese language, he said.

‘There is no permission to teach anything else at the camps,’ he said.

The state minister said that the government was setting up new learning centres to impart education to the Rohingya children and adolescents of the host communities in Cox’s Bazar.

The learning centres would be established and run with a $25 million World Bank grant under the government’s Reaching Out-of-School Children project

‘UNICEF would develop and monitor the centres that would provide basic education to as many as 1.50 lakh Rohingya children at the two mega camps in Ukhiya and Teknaf,’ the state minister said.

As part of the project, Zakir said, 500 new centres will be set up at the camps, which will be run simultaneously with the existing 1,000 UNICEF-operated learning centres.

‘Learning materials would also be provided to the children free of cost,’ he said, adding that the training of the 1,500 selected teachers, from both local and Rohingya communities, had already begun under the supervision of UNICEF.

Zakir also said that the government was concerned about the future of the host-community people as they were seriously affected by the Rohingya influx in 2017.

As part of the World Bank project, he said, pre-vocational training would be imparted to 8,500 local adolescents in the eight upazilas of Cox’s Bazar, who quit studies after completing primary education.

‘Dropped out persons aged 15–23 years will get training in 22 categories—driving, housekeeping, sewing and others—for three months under the supervision of Save the Children,’  said Md Delwar Hossain, ROSC II project director.

Portions of the grant, he said, would be spent on the psycho-social rehabilitation of an estimated two lakh Rohingya and local children, the renovation of 100 government primary schools and the purchase of computers and other equipment at district primary education offices.

The World Bank signed the $25 million grant agreement with the Economic Relations Division in November 2018.

Of the amount for the ROSC II project, the World Bank would provide $21 million and the Canadian government $4 million, Delwar said.

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