ALIF AILAAN UPDATE. September 2014

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1 ALIF AILAAN UPDATE September 2014

2 September at Alif Ailaan Giving Pakistan's leaders an opportunity to experience teaching at government schools Highlighting Pakistan s education issues on World Literacy Day Running intelligent enrolment campaigns Inspiring learning in times of crisis Encouraging mothers to become change agents Localising the education discourse Setting examples in Matiari Mediating for resolution of education issues in Balochistan Maintaining momentum in the media Expanding outreach through partners

3 #LeadingThroughTeaching Leading Through Teaching This World Literacy Day, Alif Ailaan and KITAB Ltd. launched a series of workshops to give Pakistan's political leaders an opportunity to experience teaching at government schools. The Leading Through Teaching project will not only aim to inspire students and teachers but also help inject a deeper understanding of education issues and solutions that contribute to Pakistan s education discourse. These workshops are also open to teachers, volunteers, public figures and other civil society leaders who are interested in making teaching visits to government schools. September 8: Ambassador Sherry Rehman with the KITAB workshop team September 9: Top (L-R): MPA Tahira Imran, MPA Syed Khalid Ahmed, Member of the Sindh Assembly s Standing Committee for Education Sumeta Syed, Saima Shah Asad MQM Social relations department Bottom (L-R): Mangla Sharma- MQM's Social Relations Department, Advisor to the Sindh CM on Youth Affairs Faisal Subzwari, Journalist Anil Dutta, MPA Muzahir Amir Khan

4 #LeadingThroughTeaching On September 29 the Sindh Assembly invited Alif Ailaan to host a Leading Through Teaching session in the presence of Senior Minister for Education and Literacy, Nisar Khuhro and MPA Sharmila Faruqi. MPA Sharmila Faruqi practises her storytelling skills on Class I students. Volunteers interested in holding their own storytelling sessions at schools join us for our fourth interactive session on September 30

5 MID-YEAR ENROLMENT Running informed enrolment campaigns As schools re-opened across Pakistan, our education activists supported provincial enrolment drives. Using the education indicators from the Alif Ailaan Pakistan District Education Ranking 2014, our activists designed district-specific events to focus on enrolment, retention and quality. Gujranwala: Alif Ailaan education activist, Ch. Muhammad Iqbal Gujjar (MPA- PMLN), Dr. Javed Iqbal (EDO Education-Gujranwala), Chairman NGOs Forum of Gujranwala at an all stakeholder conference on retention Quality and retention were the focus of seminars and conferences hosted in districts that scored high on enrolment. Districts: Haripur, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (97.33) Layyah, Punjab (97.14) Jhelum, Punjab (96.43) Okara, Punjab (89.40) Lahore, Punjab (87.96) Gujranwala, Punjab (85.87) Karachi, Sindh (85.20) Layyah (left): Seminar in Layyah discussing the alarming drop out ratios in the district Okara (right): Stakeholders, CSOs and education department officials meet to discuss measures for improvement in learning outcomes

6 MID-YEAR ENROLMENT In districts with significantly low enrolment scores, our education activists ran a series of media campaigns, hosted gatherings for community and tribal leaders and held local theatre performances to encourage enrolment. Districts: Kohistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (44.88) Rahim Yar Khan (RYK), Punjab (53.57) Lasbela, Balochistan (53.74) Jamshoro, Sindh (54.99) Bahawalpur, Punjab (56.22) Loralai, Balochistan (59.65) Loralai: Mothers and children attending a performance Rahimyar Khan: Local theater teams perform short skits covering education issues faced in the district

7 MID-YEAR ENROLMENT Driving action in Kohistan Kohistan is the lowest ranked district in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa with a 26% literacy rate. For the last six months our education activist, Hafeez ur Rehman, has been engaging the religious leaders and education department officials, encouraging them to take action in the hard-to-reach remote areas of Kohistan. This month, he persuaded the education department officials to make first-of-a-kind surprise visits to non functional schools the remote tehsil, Kandia. SDEO Muhammad Tanveer; ADEO Noor Mehmood and ASDEO Mufti Mehmood led surprise visits to schools and found teachers and watchmen using school buildings as homes for their families. More schools were found to be locked down. Before a disciplinary action was taken, keeping the culture of Kohistan in mind, Hafeez ur Rehman organised a jirga with community elders and the media to ensure that the measures were taken in confidence of the local community. Since then, the education department has issued showcause notices to 56 teachers, withholding their salaries. Jirga with tribal leaders in tehsil Kandia Action taken against 56 absent teachers and watchmen in Kohistan, The Daily Aaj (Sep 4).

8 MID-YEAR ENROLMENT A mixed approach was implemented in 18 districts that scored better in the Rankings. Activities included door-to-door enrolment drives, theatre, seminars, conferences, community sessions and engagement with the media. Larkana (L-R): News clipping reporting action taken against absent teachers in tehsil Bakrani, Alif Ailaan education activist hosting a community session and local theatre play Walidain ki Awaz (Voice of Parents) in Mianwali Thematic theater being performed in Leepa valley in Hattian and Manak Payyan in Muzaffarabad, AJK. Clockwise from top left: Community session in Jhang, Waldain Ki Awaaz (Parents Union) meeting in Mianwali, Prominent Pashto poet and Head of Pashto department at the University of Peshawar, Prof. Dr. Abaseen Yousufzai speaking at a theatre play in Peshawar Enrolment rally in Multan, Local theatre in Muzaffarabad, Door to door enrolment drive in Nowshera

9 ON THE GROUND Celebrating World Literacy Day On September 8, to mark the World Literacy Day, our education activists hosted walks and rallies in their respective districts. Our education activists successfully gathered key civil society organisations, community leaders and education officials together to talk about education reform. Bannu: District officers and civil society activists leading a Literacy Day walk Peshawar: Activists and representatives of civil society organisations campaigning for enrolment outside the Peshawar press club Rahimyar Khan: Students rally for literacy

10 PAKISTAN FLOODS 2014 Ensuring education for flood victims Scores of schools in flood-affected and surrounding areas were closed down this month to serve as community and relief centers for victims. Our education activists, participated in rescue efforts to ensure that children continue to learn at makeshift schools. Jhang: Alif Ailaan education activist, Asif Mughal, reports on the status of schools to CNN while involved in rescue efforts, Link: and with the help of local social workers arranges for schooling to continue Layyah: A drawing competition was organised for internally displaced children at relief camps. The session was attended by Nadeem ur Rehman (DCO), Hidayat Ullah Shah (EDO), and Sardar Qaiser Khan Magsi (MPA) Alif Ailaan education activist, Junaid Dahar speaking to internally displaced children emphasising on the need to continue their learning, through the tough times

11 WORKING WITH MOTHERS Inspiring mothers to become agents of positive change Left: Deputy DEO (female), Mrs. Shehnaz speaks to a group of mothers in Lasbela, Right: A female only community session in Charsadda with civil society organisations, Darmaan Foundation and NATPOW Community session emphasising the importance of female education in Kohat (left), Rahimyar Khan (middle) Gathering working women of the Hindu community in Rahimyar Khan to advocate for their children s right to education (right)

12 LOCALISING THE DISCOURSE Localising the education discourse in Swat, Rajanpur and Thatta This September we laid the foundation to bring measurable improvement in education indicators of district Swat, tehsil Jampur (Rajanpur) and union council Mirpur Sakro (Thatta). Swat (L-R): Meeting with former MNA and member ANP Muzaffar ul Mulk, Enrolment planning with CSOs and education officials Alif Ailaan is collaborating with all partners and associations to design activities that will: Create enthusiasm for education amongst students and parents Provide teachers with opportunities to acquire and disseminate knowledge Showcase a culture that promotes 100% enrolment Workshops marking the beginning of Nutrition and Education profiling in Union Council Mirpur Sakro, Thatta Meeting with MPA Sardar Atif Khan Mazari from PML-N in Rajanpur

13 LOCALISING THE DISCOURSE All hands on deck for Matiari Alif Ailaan education activist in Matiari, Rahmatullah Balal, is running a focused campaign to re-open closed schools in the district. Apart from meetings with political stakeholders, civil society organisations and rallying for education, Rahmatullah and his team have visited the suspected closed schools and compiled a comprehensive database with SEMIS codes, contact details, duration and reasons for closure. The team has identified 69 non-functional schools. Individual letters detailing the findings have been sent to the relevant EDO, Secretary Education Fazlullah Pechuho, Senior Minister for Education and Literacy Nisar Khuhro and Chairman PPP, Bilawal Bhutto Zardari. Rahmatullah s efforts are supported by Jeay Sindh Quomi Mahaz (JSQM) and The Express Tribune. Link:

14 BALOCHISTAN ENGAGEMENT Finding common ground to improve education in Balochistan On September 20, we mediated a dialogue between the ruling National Party (NP), their ally Pashtunkhwa Milli Awami Party (PkMAP) and the president of Government Teachers Association (GTA) to resolve the issue of political appointments in the education department. Hosted at the University of Balochistan, Quetta, the event was attended by over 100 students and activists. Dr. Ishaq Baloch, MPA from National Party and coordinator for Chief Minister Balochistan, reassured the audience of Balochistan Government s commitment to education

15 Maintaining our momentum in the media We have continued to deepen our engagement with the media. This month we provided leads on education stories and provided specific data and evidence for journalists. These reports are enriching the current discourse on education. Media highlights: MEDIA Education is a privilege that the people of Kohistan have never had Express Tribune (Sep 5) Pakistani youth the least literate in Saarc countires The News (Sep 7) More empty promises expected on literacy day today Dawn (Sep 8) 25 million children out of school The Nation (Sep 8) International literacy day: Only half of Sindh goes to primary school Express Tribune (Sep 8) Discovering affinity between children and politicians The News (Sep 9) If there are teachers, there are no school buildings; if there are school buildings, there are no teachers Express Tribune (Sep 9) CSOs call for passing right to education law Dawn (Sep 13) South Asian monsoon s trail of destruction 4029 TV.com (Sep 13) From hope to despair South Asia monsoon s trail of destruction CNN (Sep 13) Right to education: 2.5m children out of school in K-P Express Tribune (Sep 14) Sindh s education farce The News (Sep 29)

16 RSPN Expanding our reach through partners Through RSPN Alif Ailaan s message is now reaching beyond our direct coverage. In September RSPN has organised 44 enrolment walks and formed 3 Parent Ittehads. Pishin, Balochistan Mansehra, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa News clipping of an RSPN led seminar in Jamshoro, Sindh (Sep 7) Facilitated by the RSPN, Parents Ittehad are organising parents on a platform to demand the right to education for their children. These platforms also provide parents with the agency to hold education providers to account. Battagram, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Jaffarabad, Balochistan Parents Ittehad empower underprivileged and uneducated parents.

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