The United Nations education agency today celebrated the opening of a new school at Dawodiyah Camp in Dohouk, Iraq, as part of its efforts to provide quality secondary education to children and adolescents in internally displaced persons communities.
The opening of the new school represents another major milestone in the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization’s (UNESCO) work to improve access to quality education in Iraq following the opening of the Baharka Secondary School in March this year.
“Regardless of the circumstances you are in, remember that education is your right, demand for it and take advantage of it,” said Ali Zulfiqar, the UNESCO Project Manager, who spoke on behalf to the new students on behalf of the UNESCO Office for Iraq Director, Axel Plathe.
The Dawodiyah Secondary School, for which UNESCO received financial support from the Government of Saudi Arabia, has six classrooms and will host up to 500 students and 20 teachers in two shifts. Children will attend catch-up classes over the next three months, before sitting for exams at the end of June.
With 4,017 people and 661 families currently residing in Dawodiyah camp, the opening of the new school will allow a large number of students to continue their education and restore a sense of normality and stability to their lives and helps fulfil the aims of UNESCO’s project to continue ensuring that quality education reaches the children of displaced people.
Government and education officials from the regional capital, Erbil, attended the opening ceremony, as did students, parents and teachers along with members of the international humanitarian community and civil society organizations.
“We are thankful for UNESCO’s support in constructing the Dawodiyah Secondary School for IDPs [internally displaced persons],” said Abed Yousef, Director General of Education in Dohouk during his speech at the opening ceremony, “and for helping the Ministry of Education of the Kurdistan Regional Government in conducting teacher training workshops and providing catch up classes as well as the necessary stationery for students to continue their education.”
(Source: United Nations News Centre)