The unforgiving expectation of all parents in the UK and the West is that the school that their children go to is safe and secure. The local authority and Health & Safety executive ensure that the school building is well maintained and temperature controlled for all seasons. The classroom and playground facilities are of a good standard and schools aim to improve the equipment and learning material on an ongoing basis for the pupils. This sort of environment is a basic expectation and any major deviation causes uproar within the community.
Over time, many READ Foundation schools have been developed along the same lines as the ones in the UK and have fantastic building and facilities. Some 50% of these schools are purpose built with science labs, computer rooms, libraries, playgrounds and other facilities that we take for granted in the UK. The parents have a great affinity towards the fantastic school that their child goes to and the great environment fosters huge confidence in the education that their children are receiving. It also inspires the teachers to go to another level in their desires to support the children in their education. An example of a school of this quality is the Saran School, District Hattian Bala, Azad Kashmir; it is one extreme on the spectrum of schools that READ Foundation run.
At the other extreme, the school in Nakar Fatot, Muzaffarabad, Azad Kashmir is outdoors half way up a mountain where it plateaus. The setting is idyllic and the views are breath taking but the children are not tourists; they are there to learn and whilst during the summer months sitting out in the open in the fresh air undertaking your studies may be a great experience, when it gets cold, rainy and snowy it can lead to many lost teaching days.
Other schools that fall in between the spectrum are makeshift huts with tarpaulin for walls and leaking corrugated iron sheets for a roof. They don’t have windows and in some cases the internal walls between classes are non-existent. The desks and chairs are old and sub-standard; other facilities are either not there or very basic. Despite this, the children will continue to travel great distances, wrap up well when it’s cold and turn up for school, as they value their education which will help make a better future for them.
READ Foundation not only aim to provide quality education for the children attending their schools but also to provide this in the best schools possible; those that are purpose built and have all of the facilities that support the children to excel in their studies.
You can see the broad spectrum of schools via the attached links.