Baramulla, Aug 6: The ongoing peaceful atmosphere along the Line of Control (LoC) in Uri has paved the way for the open-air community schooling in the area.
This has come as a relief for the locals for whom it used to be extremely dangerous to venture out of homes.
In the open air school, students study in a field and are not restricted to classrooms.
These open fields are their classroom as well as playfields.
The open-air classes were started recently by the J&K administration with an aim to reach the students of far-flung areas.
The initiative has generated huge response, especially in the areas where internet facility is almost non-existent and students cannot avail online class facilities.
In several villages close to the LoC in Uri, the recent ceasefire between India and Pakistan has created an atmosphere of peace and security for the locals.
The students with a smile on their faces feel blessed while participating in the open-air classes.
“The fear of guns and shelling used to keep us indoors. The ceasefire has brought a smile on our faces. A year back, we could not imagine venturing out of classes or our homes. Now, things have changed. We are attending open-air classes. Elders in the community are debating and discussing matters of importance in the open without fear and threat,” said Irshad Ahmad of Sahoora village close to LoC in Uri.
On Wednesday, the officials of the Department of Education, Uri visited the village Sahoora, which is located across the fence.
The officials took stock of the open-air classes and were astonished on noticing the enthusiasm among the students that had created a festive atmosphere in the village.
Zonal Education Planning Officer, Uri, Wali Muhammad said, “Several schools along the LoC in Uri are located across the fence. The recent ceasefire between the two neighbouring countries has given confidence as well as generated enthusiasm among the students, which is visible when one visits these areas. Education can yield fruitful results only when there is peace thanks to the ceasefire which has rejuvenated the people of this area.”
Muhammad Assad, a resident of Hathlanga, Uri, while expressing satisfaction over the smooth functioning of the open-air community schools said, “Several schools in many villages along the LoC come directly on the radar of the Pakistan Army’s pickets. When a ceasefire was not in place, students used to be hesitant about visiting schools and at times schools used to remain open but no students attended classes.”
However, the ceasefire initiative has changed all this.
Now the students are also taking part in cultural programmesorganised by the school administrations and regularly attending classes.
“We wish the ceasefire continues so that we as well as our future generations thrive in peace and tranquility,” Assad said.
A number of schools function in the 35 habitations across the fence in Uri.
The open-air community schools have been started in all these areas and due to the peaceful atmosphere along the LoC, the open-air community schooling has been a successful initiative in these areas.