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NDMA launches school safety programme across country

Islamabad-The National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) IN collaboration with the United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) yesterday initiated a pilot programme ‘Pakistan School Safety Framework’ in 68 public and private schools across the country.

The programme is being implemented in different schools, including Beacon House, Fazaia School System, Bahria School System, APSACS, City School System in the federal capital, Peshawar, Lahore, Karachi, Quetta AJ&K and Gilgit.

The Gender and Child Cell (GCC) of the NDMA with the support of UNICEF and British Council was pursuing the Pakistan School Safety Framework (PSSF) to remain prepared for effective and efficient response against natural or man-made disasters.

The Pakistan School Safety Framework was developed after a series of national level consultative meetings with the government and private sector stakeholders and it was also reviewed by international consultants.

In November, 2015 the NDMA signed a joint work plan with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) where the partnership aimed at enhancing disaster preparedness, response and recovery with a special focus on children.

A consensus was developed in the final national consultative meeting on August 17-18, 2016 that frameworks should be pretested through a pilot programme and its findings should be reviewed through another consultative meeting to refine it before implementation.

Before the start of pilot programme, 68 schools were selected by involving the respective education departments and secretariats of the private school systems.

From amongst these schools nominations were obtained for School teachers all over the Country to be trained by the expert trainers on School Safety.

The programme comprises four phases. During the first phase, a core group of 30 members was trained at Lahore as Trainer of Master School Trainer& Quality Supervisors. In the second phase, the core group is now responsible for training three teachers and one head teacher from each of the nominated 68 schools on the PSSF.

The third phase of the project will be the roll out of the School Safety Framework to the schools in December 2016 and January 2017.

The trained teachers will go back to their schools to develop respective school safety plan, raise School Safety Organisations, undertake the self-assessment of the School Safety Standards in accordance with Pakistan School Safety Framework and also prepare school community for response against disasters.

The final phase of the programme at end Jan, 2017 will envisage the evaluation of School Safety Standards through the team of evaluators of district departments of education, building, fire and police along with representatives of the NDMA and PDMAs.

During Evaluation, the schools will share their self-assessment of Safety Standards and their school safety plans.

The Evaluation Team will ascertain the School Safety Standards as per the Pakistan School Safety Framework as a 2nd Party Evaluation.

The Gender and Child Cell of NDMA is coordinating the Pilot Programme through the team of experts of British Council with support of UNICEF Pakistan.

All stake holders are on board and it is expected that this Pilot Programme will bring in much needed input to finalize the PSSF.

Source: The Nation

Byline: Staff Reporter

November 30, 2016


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