Misguided Decisions Force Girls to Quit School in Eastern Syria

A decision by the AANES to postpone schooltime to the afternoon has pushed many girls out of school, according to SY-24.
Misguided Decisions Force Girls to Quit School in Eastern Syria

Several decisions issued by the Autonomous Administration in Northern and Eastern Syria (AANES) have contributed to sparking social problems, which had previously disappeared. Girls faced the greatest hardship from these phenomena, with many of them deprived of education. The girls lost access to education not only due to outdated customs and traditions but also due to decrees issued by the Autonomous Administration’s Education Committee, which forced dozens of girls to leave school under pressure from their parents, who are still furious about these decisions.

“Over the past few days, the Education Committee has issued a decision prohibiting secondary and middle schools from operating in the morning; under the decrees, they may only operate during the evening, i.e. after public working hours for schools have ended, until late in the day. The decrees impose fines on anyone who violates their terms, on top of closing the relevant center. This regime has forced many girls to stop attending during the day,” said Nawal, a teacher, who is one of the supervisors for a private educational institute. “Previously, many of the girls stopped attending school full-time, and parents began demanding the reimbursement of the fees they paid.”

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Nawal added: “These random and ill-considered decisions have caused anger among people in the area, especially in the Deir-ez-Zor and Raqqa governorates. This is because the education committee neither appreciates nor respects the situation of female students in a tribal society dominated by customs and traditions, which oblige girls not to spend long hours outside the house in the evening. The decrees force the female students to travel late in the evening, alone in public transport — especially those who live in villages outside the city center.

The teacher indicated that the number of female students who have quit school since the decision was made amounts to more than 40 percent of the total female students. That percentage could increase, according to Nawal, who added that such a decision comes alongside the end of daylight savings, which constricts the hours of daylight further.

This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.

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