Dhaka, Bangladesh
Plea to set up quality school in every ward

Plea to set up quality school in every ward

News Report The traffic jam in the Dhaka city is expected to be reduced substantially provided standard primary and high schools are set up in very ward of the city, said town planners, educationists and environmentalists. Professor Nazrul Islam, former chairman of University Grants Commission, and town planer, expressed the views that every ward of the city should have standard high schools to cater to the local students. Guardians of the city are in hectic competition to enroll their offspring with some reputed educational institutions in the Dhaka city creating unhealthy competition in the society. Offspring of the well-off section of the society usually go the English medium schools, a good number of which are situated at Dhanmondi. Concentration of schools and coaching centres at select residential areas of the capital causes serious traffic jams. Wayside schools and coaching centres also create problems for smooth traffic movement at different areas of the capital. As no permission from Rajdhani Unnayan Kartripakkha and Dhaka Transport Coordinating Authority is required schools and coaching centres are opened also at busy intersections. The use of private cars and rickshaws for bringing students to schools and coaching centres and keeping them parked before them clog the roads at school hours. Additional police deployments provided no results in areas having clusters of schools, Dhaka Metropolitan police’s additional commissioner for traffic management Mosleh Uddin Ahmed, told the news today. It gets difficult to manage traffic movement near schools, he said, as they were opened without following plans. Most of the schools in the capital and elsewhere in the country were opened at rented accommodations without taking Rajuk’s permission, said Rajuk member for development control Md Asmaul Hossain. Before opening, educational institutions, stadiums, markets and business establishments must take permission from Rajuk and DTCA as they generate traffic, said BUET civil engineering professor and communication expert Md Shamsul Hoque. Schools generate ‘undisciplined trips’ as students are brought from various areas on private cars and rickshaws said Shamsul Hoque relying on his private study on the issue. Coaching centres intensify daylong traffic mess, he said. The education ministry is silent about the need of taking permission from Rajuk or DTCA in its registration policy for English medium schools. Education ministry’s policy on non-government school don’t require them to take Rajuk’s and DTCA’s permission before they are opened. There is no enforcement of the two policies which prohibit opening more than one school within one km. An inspector of Dhaka education board said that the policies were not enforced considering the future of students. He could not explain why seven schools and several kindergartens could be opened within one km of Agrani Gils School at Azimpur. The schools in question include Viqarunnesa Noon School, Azimpur School, BUET Laboratory School, Udayan School, University Laboratory School besides a host of kindergartens. The area’s residents said serious traffic jams hinder their movements every day. Residents of Shahjahanpur, Motijheel, Siddheswari, Dhanmondi, Asad Gate, Uttara and other areas in the capital hosting schools and coaching centres made similar complaints. Dhanmondi faces traffic congestions from its 50 schools including 35 English Medium ones. Traffic congestions caused by schools at Dhanmondi Residential Area also create problems in all the nearby localities. Uttara’s over 50 schools also create similar traffic issues. English medium schools grew up at Dhanmondi and Uttara following the law of demand and supply, said Bangladesh English Medium School Association’s general secretary GM Nizam Uddin. BUET urban and regional planning professor Mohammad Shakil Akther said reserving enrolments for students in each school locality alone could end the capital’s growing traffic jams. He said that many developed countries tackled school hour traffic jams by reserving enrolments for school catchment areas. Education minister Nurul Islam Nahid said that he was aware about the issues. He also said that the government was establishing new schools at different corners of the capital to end the rush of students to select schools. New education law on enactment would discourage opening schools anywhere and everywhere, said Nahid. In order to protect the characteristics of Dhanmondi residential area, residents of the area MA Masud and Md Matin had filed a writ with the High Court on 2011. After concluding initial hearing of the writ, the High Court had ordered a rule on February 2 of the same year. Alongside, the court had ordered a sine die restriction on permissions for new school, colleges and business bodies. After finishing the hearing of the rule, the High Court gave the verdict of eviction on June 11, 2012. Dewan Abdul Mannan, councilor of ward number 11 of the Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC), while talking to The News Today said, city’s traffic jam will be reduced by 40 per cent provided standard and quality high schools are set up in every ward. He said he has discussed with Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) to set up a high standard high school at Kalyanpur within short time to meet local demand. He said the proposed school will have standard like Rajuk Moddel High School, Viqarunnesa Noon School, Azimpur School, BUET Laboratory School, Udayan School, University Laboratory School and Motijheel Ideal School. Dewan Abdul Mannan expressed the views that country’s banks can help set up standard schools in every ward under social corporate responsibility. Saleh Abdullah, a resident of Boro Moghbazar, sent his son and daughter at English medium schools at Dhanmondi. Both are children spend 2-4 hours on the street while going to school and returning home. Ehte Samul Hassan and Nilofar Naz live at kalyanpur and both send their offspring at English medium schools at Dhanmondi. Both are children spend 2-4 hours on the street while going to school and returning home.

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