Over 350 school buildings were damaged in the D. I. Khan district alone due to the severe rains and flash floods, which hampered learning in several parts of the state. According to a representative of the district’s education department, the recent rains and floods have destroyed or damaged about 257 male and 87 female schools across the district’s five tehsils.
The Ministry of Federal Education and KP Education Department have introduced School On Wheels, a Google-funded pilot programme to provide classroom amenities to the pupils of D. I. Khan along with potent gadgets, such as Chromebooks, to assist flood-affected students in returning to school. School on Wheels seeks to encourage kids to continue their education by igniting interest through stimulating lessons and enjoyable extracurricular activities.
A single model will be used as a proof-of-concept for three months at DI Khan, together with all the necessary tools for efficient teaching and learning environments, including the internet, a generator, folding desks, a whiteboard, and an LCD. This pilot initiative will act as a guide for scaling up similar models in the future to solve Pakistan’s issues with out-of-school children.
Waseem Ajmal, Additional Secretary, Ministry of Federal Education, commented on this project, saying, “We are grateful to Google for helping us visualise the idea and carry it out with the assistance of numerous local and foreign teams. The Ministry of Education will look for additional potential to expand this concept through this pilot project.
While members from the Ministry of Federal Education, KP Education Department, and Deputy Commissioner D. I. Khan were present in person, the Google for Education team also participated in the launch event remotely.
“Through this effort, we seek to lure kids towards educational activities that might further develop their interest in exploring the digital world,” Commissioner D. I. Khan, who was invited as the chief guest, stated.
Tech Valley, a Pakistani Google for Education Partner, is carrying out this initiative.
The CEO of Tech Valley, Umar Farooq, made the following statement at the event: “With this initiative, we plan to engage and motivate students in D. I. Khan to pursue their education after being affected by flood and equip them with fundamental digital literacy skills so they can continue learning remotely in the future as well.”
Faisal Amin Gandapur, Minister of Local Government, Elections, and Rural Development, who is a local representative of D. I. Khan, stated that “education is the top priority of our government, and we appreciate the efforts of Google for Education and Tech Valley for initiating this initiative.”