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Wednesday, October 4, 2023

Will There Be A Light Of Hope For Education In Rural Kashmir 

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Imtiaz Ullah
Imtiaz Ullahhttps://nomadlawyer.org/about/
Imtiaz Ullah is the founder of travel website - NomadLawyer. A Corporate Lawyer, Senior Travel Correspondent, The Traveller Trails magazine and also acts as an Advisory Member, NGO - Sarvahitey. His travel philosophy is exploring new places, meeting new people, knowing the culture, eating like a local. He always believes in the idea-“ Don't just be a traveller but a Responsible one”.

Education in rural Kashmir has been a challenge for a long time. The region has been marred by political instability and conflict, which has severely impacted the education system. However, in recent years, there has been some progress in improving the education sector, and many initiatives have been taken to provide quality education to children in rural areas.

Education In Rural Kashmir

AHMS School Run By Locals In Sofipora

One such initiative is the AHMS school in the Sofipora area of Pahalgam, run by Sabzar Ali and his friends. 

The school is aimed at providing education to children in rural areas who are currently deprived of quality education. The school currently lacks basic facilities such as a boundary wall, computer lab, science lab, and a library up to the 10th grade. This lack of infrastructure hinders the student’s learning and their ability to compete with students in urban areas.

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Road to Education in rural Kashmir Isn’t Easy

The lack of infrastructure is not the only challenge the AHMS school faces. One of the significant challenges in rural education is the shortage of qualified teachers. In many cases, the teachers are not adequately trained to teach modern subjects and lack the necessary skills to deliver quality education. Sabzar Ali and his friends recognized this challenge and have taken steps to address it by sending their teachers for training at the Voyage Educare Foundation through the Raabta program.

The lack of quality education in rural areas is a pressing issue that needs to be addressed. According to a report by the Indian government, the literacy rate in rural areas of Jammu and Kashmir is only 68.74%, which is significantly lower than the national average of 74.04%. The report also highlights that only 31.2% of rural households in Jammu and Kashmir have access to electricity, which makes it difficult to provide modern education.

How Lack Of Education Can Impact The Future In Kashmir

The lack of education in rural areas has many long-term consequences. Children who do not receive quality education are more likely to drop out of school and are less likely to get well-paying jobs. This leads to a vicious cycle of poverty, which is difficult to break. Education is also essential for the overall development of individuals and communities. It helps in improving health, reducing poverty, and promoting gender equality.

Role Of Government And NGOs

To address these challenges, the government and various NGOs have launched several initiatives. One such initiative is the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA), launched in 2001. The SSA aims to provide free and compulsory education to all children aged 6-14 years. The program has been successful in increasing enrollment rates in rural areas. However, the quality of education remains a significant challenge.

The government has also launched the Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA) to improve the quality of secondary education. The program aims to provide infrastructure and teachers to schools in rural areas. The RMSA has been successful in improving the infrastructure and teacher-student ratios in schools. However, there is still a shortage of qualified teachers in rural areas.

Various NGOs are also working to improve the education sector in rural areas. These organizations provide infrastructure, teachers, and other resources to schools. Some NGOs also work on improving the quality of education by providing training to teachers and developing innovative teaching methods.

More on Kashmir

In conclusion, education in rural areas of Kashmir faces several challenges, including a shortage of infrastructure, qualified teachers, and a lack of access to modern education. However, there have been several initiatives to address these challenges, and progress has been made in recent years. The AHMS school in the Sofipora area of Pahalgam is an excellent example of an initiative to provide quality education to rural children. The government and various NGOs must continue to work together to improve the education sector in rural areas and provide a better future for the children of Kashmir.

If you want to help or donate to AHMS School school, please do write to us at [email protected]

Contributed by Sabzar Ali Sheikh

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