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World

13 Oct 2021

Taliban Allows Girls to Return to School in Some Provinces

The Index Today

Middle and high school girls in northern Afghanistan can now return to school after the Taliban announced the reopening of schools. The Islamic group opened schools for boys around the country but failed to confirm when their female peers will be able to rejoin.

However, in the northern provinces of the country, secondary schools have been reopened according to Taliban Spokesman. This move showcases how the Islamist Group is willing to reshape its policy and move away from its previously criticized regime.

Two Northern provinces, Balkh and Kundaz opened schools over a month ago according to reports. Taliban officials met with school principals and other officials to determine the next educational policy. Principal of Fatima Balkhi High School, Shamayel Sovaida said, “We and our students are very happy that girls schools have reopened and that girls can continue their lessons.”

Taliban education officials have asked teachers to encourage and convince girls to come back to school, saying “Those female students who are not coming to the classes, go and knock on their door, and tell them to come to school.” However, many girls have still not returned to school due to fear and lack of trust. It was reported that over 1000 girls out 3000 stayed absent as their families fled the city.

There are still a number of provinces where educational institutes remain closed, southern Helmand being one of them. A teacher, Shukria Hesarnaye has been waiting to receive an answer from Taliban officials to confirm reopening of classes. She said, “He did not give me a hopeful answer. He just told me we are waiting for a plan. How is it possible that schools are open in the north but not in the south? If there is a law, it should be implemented in every corner of the country. Every official is making decision on his own in his province.”

It is expected that with growing pressure from international bodies and the need for aid will eventually force the Islamic group to reopen all schools. The dire financial situation of the country will keep doors open for international aid where over $9 million of the nation’s assets remain frozen in the central bank.


©Photo: wall street journal

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