Schools in Karen Refugee Camps Face Difficulties for Maintenance in Upcoming Year

Some schools in the Karen refugee camps are facing difficulties to continue teaching in upcoming years due to lack of funding, according to education officials from the refugee camps.

The Karen Refugee Committee Education Entity’s chair Naw Daborah Htoo said these schools are facing difficulties since some donor organizations have cut funding for the refugee camps and some will stop providing the funding.

“The basic education schools are in a better situation. It’s difficult for post-ten schools (higher education). We have lesser support for all schools in funding and construction of school buildings. We have to discuss with the organizations on how the schools that are facing difficulties will proceed,” Naw Daborah Htoo told Karen News.

Over 60 basic education schools and post-ten schools have been currently opened in seven refugee camps at the Thai-Myanmar border and some basic education schools may have to be merged and some post-ten schools may have to be closed in the upcoming years, according to school officials.

The education sector of the refugee camps have been affected more or less by the gradual decline in food support and other assistance by international donors for the refugee camps since late 2012.

“There will only be one post-ten school left in Nu Po [refugee camp] next year. The donors provide the funding based on the number of students so it’s not enough for the teachers. Some students have returned back to the country (Burma) to attend private schools that are not universities. Some of them don’t attend schools anymore and they started working,” said Teacher Saw Myaung Sein, who has been providing educational assistance to Nu Po refugee camp.

Besides the schools in the Karen refugee camps at the Thai-Burma border, Burmese migrant schools are also facing difficulties relating to education, according to groups providing educational assistance to Burmese migrant schools.

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