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Thursday, January 30, 2020

UN, humanitarian bodies laud Bangladesh’s decision

The Daily Star 
January 30, 2020
Diplomatic Correspondent

Education for Rohingya Children


The UN and global humanitarian community have lauded Bangladesh’s decision to expand the access to formal education for Rohingya children living in refugee camps in Cox’s Bazar.

The decision was taken on Monday at the meeting of the National Task Force on Rohignya crisis, chaired by Foreign Secretary Masud Bin Momen at the foreign ministry.

In line with the decision, the education sector for the humanitarian response in Cox’s Bazar now plans to pilot the introduction of the Myanmar curriculum in the Rohingya refugee camps starting in April. Initially, it targets 10,000 Rohingya students from sixth to ninth grade.

The use of the Myanmar’s curriculum will be expanded to other grades in phases.

To date, the education sector in Cox’s Bazar has provided informal education opportunities to 3,24,000 Rohingya children -- aged between four and 14 years -- based on the Learning Competency Framework and Approach.

In addition, over 10,000 Rohingya adolescents -- aged 15 to 18 years -- have received literacy, numeracy, life-skills and vocational skills training.

“We believe this is a positive step and a clear indication of the commitment by the Government of Bangladesh to ensure access to learning for Rohingya children and adolescents, as well as to equip them with the right skills and capacities for their future and return to Myanmar when the conditions allow,” said a joint statement of UN and global humanitarian community.

“When conditions become conducive and refugees are able to return to Myanmar in a safe, dignified and sustainable way, these efforts will also help children reintegrate into the Myanmar education system and society,” the statement adds.

It said in Myanmar’s Rakhine State, the UN and partners will also -- to the extent possible -- continue to provide educational support and assistance to Rohingya and other affected communities, said the statement signed by Athena Rayburn of the Save the Children and Mostafa Mohammad Sazzad Hossain of the UN Refugee Agency in Dhaka.

Rohingyas also welcomed the decision, saying it will help the Rohingya have a better and meaningful life.

“Rohingya were not allowed education, mostly higher education in Myanmar. Bangladesh has not only sheltered the refugees, but has now decided to grant formal education. It reflects the greatness of Bengali nation,” said Nay San Lwin, co-founder of Free Rohingya Coalition.
He suggested that Bangladesh government allows Rohingyas to study up to tenth grade, and allow them education in universities.

“We hope that the international community will come up to help the Rohingya,” Nay San told The Daily Star from Germany yesterday.
About 400,000 Rohingya children currently live in refugee camps, and global rights groups have been demanding that the Bangladesh government allow them to have a formal education.

Some 750,000 Rohingya fled Myanmar to Bangladesh since August 2017, when Myanmar’s military launched crackdown against the Rohingya. 
 

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