SYLHET, Sept 05: Students of at least 150 schools in Sunamganj suffer extremely every monsoon for the inundation problem.
It happened this year too affecting the academic activities and causing much harm to the institutions as well. Many school buildings remained inundated for weeks together while approach to the schools remained same for longer period.
When contacted, District Education officer (Secondary), Sunamganj Md Jahangir Alam said about 50 high schools were badly affected by inundation during the floods this year in June-July. It forced the authorities to keep the institutions shut for a longer period, he said adding the higher authority had already been informed of the situation.
Children of about 100 primary schools in upazilas - Tahirpur, Shulla, Jamalganj and Dharmapasha - suffer extremely during the monsoon as their premises or floors go under water almost every year. Often water enters into the school structures, said a senior official at the Sunamganj District Primary Education office yesterday.
Just weeks ago 357 school buildings remained inundated for over a month after the flood waters entered those, the official added. Approaches to another 50 schools remained under water for weeks, which also forced the authorities to keep the institutions shut.
Boundary wall of a school in Tahirpur was totally damaged by the floodwater this year, he said.
"In line with instructions, we had sent damage reports of all the schools seeking immediate repair of the structures", he added.
Floods caused by the excess rains and rolling of water from the upstream in the Indian hills are permanent problem for this district.
Citizens' forum 'Proribesh O Haor Unnayan Sangstha' Convener Kashmir Reza said the students of flood-affected primary and secondary schools have to go to schools on small boats at risk of their lives for weeks in the district.
This is why students of about 30 per cent of the schools in the haor region are unable to attend classes for three months during the monsoon. Teachers also cannot take classes regularly due to higher amount in boat fare, he added, there has been a long-felt demand of 'haor allowance' for them.
This year about 60 per cent schools remained inundated for weeks, Mr Reza said, adding, "The whole haor region, which suffers for its geological backwardness needs proper attention for a balanced development alongside the rest of country."
As the school premises is not raised well, it remains under water for three months during the monsoon every year, causing much for the children, said headteacher of Berajali Government Primary School in Sunamganj Sadar upazila Taslima Begum.
Water leaks through the damaged walls while the wash block also could not be used during floods weeks ago as it remained submerged. Besides, the school has no boundary wall too.
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