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    Kuchi children to have 500 more schools until 2015

    KABUL (PAN): A senior education official on Wednesday told an international conference in Kabul that up to 500 schools would be constructed for Kuchi tribe’s children until March 2015.

    Currently, there are 125 schools providing education to 38,000 nomad children across the country, general education director at the Ministry of Education, Mohammad Naeem Bahin told the day-long international conference arranged by the Swedish Committee for Afghanistan (SCA).

    He said the schools for nomads included 74 primary, 12 high and the rest middle along with some Quran memorisation centres.

    He said the education ministry planned to establish another 68 schools, including mobile schools, for Kuchi children in different provinces during the current academic year.

    The ministry had decided to increase the number of Kuchi schools to 500 by March 2015, he added.

    The population of Kuchis in Afghanistan is estimated between two to three million, with only 14 percent of males and three percent of female Kuchis could write and read, Bahin said, quoting the Independent Directorate of Kuchi Affairs (IDKA).

    Afghanistan being a member of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization was planning to overcome illiteracy by the end of 2020 with support from the UN and other international organisations, the official said, claiming more than 4.5 million children remained deprived of education for different reasons in the country.

    “Since Kuchi tribesmen travel from one area to another, the education ministry wants to hire Kuchis as teachers for their mobile schools,” he announced.

    The Swedish Committee for Afghanistan (SCA) has already established mobile schools for Kuchi children in four provinces, SCA deputy country director for Afghanistan, Dr. Ahmad Khalid Fahim, told the press conference.

    Nearly 4,000 students were enrolled to mobile schools over the past three years, Fahim said, adding the conference was aimed at sharing international experiences of participants regarding Kuchis education.

    myn/ma



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