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400 schools still flood affected

BANGLADESH (The Daily Star/ANN) -- At least 400 educational institutions, mostly primary schools, remains waterlogged due to flood and many of them will not be holding in-person classes from today (Sunday).
Considering the situation, some school authorities decided to reopen their institutions once the water recedes while others decided to resume classes on Sunday
Students and teachers expressed their concerns saying the resumption of in-person classes would be difficult at the flood-hit schools. Besides, at least 12 primary schools have already been eroded by adjoining rivers in three districts.
In Tangail, at least 245 primary schools remained waterlogged but the authorities decided to resume in-person classes.
Mohammad Ali Ahsan, assistant primary education officer in the district, said, “We will open all the schools tomorrow [today]. Considering the circumstances further decisions will be taken.”

The playground and much of the lower levels of a government primary school in Gala union in Tangail Sadar remain under flood water.  --Photo Mirza Shakil

Students, however, expressed their concerns over the resumption of their in-person classes amid the flood.
Saiful Islam, student of Aynapur Government Primary School in Tangail Sadar upazila, said, “Our school and its surrounding areas are submerged. I do not know how we will go to the school.”
The school’s head teacher Selina Akter said, “We are concerned about how we will resume class tomorrow. I will talk to our higher authorities about this matter.”
In Sirajganj, some 105 primary schools as well as 20 secondary schools and madrasas remain waterlogged, said officials.
Emran Khandakar, assistant primary education officer in the district, said if any primary school was found unfit for holding classes, teachers would hold classes at suitable places elsewhere.
However, classes in high schools are expected to be held in classrooms as floodwater continued receding, said the district education officer Mohammad Shafiullah.
In Manikganj, classes in at least 29 primary schools and a high school in three upazilas would not start today due to waterlogging, according to government officials and locals.
Of these, a primary school in Harirampur upazila has already been devoured by the river, said, locals.
“Floodwater is receding. So, we hope to resume classes in these schools shortly,” said the District Primary Education Officer (DPEO) Tapash Kumar Adhikari.
In Kurigram, at least seven primary schools have been eroded by rivers during the recent flood, though water has receded from all the schools.
“Our school have gone into the river. We do not know how our classes will be held,” said Sumon Islam, a fifth-grader of Gatiashyam Government Primary School in Kurigram’s Rajarhat upazila.
Kurigram’s DPEO Shahidul Islam said they were trying to arrange classes for these students somewhere else. “Except these seven, all other schools in our district will be reopened on Sunday,” he told The Daily Star yesterday.
In Lalmonirhat, three primary schools have been devoured by the flood. Authorities are trying to shift the classes elsewhere.
In Bogura, two primary schools have been devoured by rivers at Sariakandi upazila.
Of these, the class of one school will start today at the school managing committee’s president’s house. However, classes of another school is still uncertain, said Tahmina Khatun, DPEO of Bougura.

Educational institutions were closed across the country on March 17 last year to curb the spread of Covid-19.

(Latest Update September 13, 2021)

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