By Gul Hamaad Farooqi
CHITRAL: Higher Secondary school Groundbreaking ceremony was held at Buzund at Torkho area by Aga Khan Education Services for Pakistan (AKESP). Earlier that ground breaking ceremonies were held for two School, Booni, and, Mastuj in district upper Chitral. The expansion will increase access to quality education and extend the school from high to higher secondary, moving (AKES,P) towards its goal of providing seamless transition to students from Kindergarten to 12th Grade (K-12).
President Aga Khan Council for Pakistan, Hafiz Sherali, for both ceremonies attended as the chief guest, while Wing Commander Chitral Scout Lt Colonel Shahzad Nadeem was the guest of the honor at Mastuj and Rai Afzal Ali was the guest of honor at Booni. Besides them CEO, Aga Khan Education Service, Pakistan, Imtiaz Momin along with senior management, leadership of the Aga Khan Regional and Local Council and representatives of the community were also present on the occasion.
Talking to this scribe General Manager of KES Brig retired Khush Muhammad Khan said that Aga Khan School (AKS), Booni and Aga Khan School (AKS), Mastuj are amongst the 156 Aga Khan schools operating in Pakistan with a total enrolment of more than 50,000 students. The new buildings at the two schools will increase the combined capacity by over 1000 students – AKS Booni by over 600 students and AKS Mastuj by over 400 students. Altogether, more than 40 modern and spacious classrooms, 8 science and computer laboratories, 2 libraries and offices and other facilities will be constructed.
The buildings are designed to enhance the learning experience with multi-purpose and flexible learning spaces reflecting the rapid changes in modern teaching methodologies. It will facilitate students to question, explore and collaborate which are necessary foundational skills to equip students to meet the complex challenges of the 21st century.
Speaking on the occasion Hafiz Sherali highlighted AKES,P’s commitment to providing modern facilities to enhance students’ learning experience, in addition to maintaining a high standard of education. He expressed the hope that students studying in these schools will excel and realize their dreams and potential.
Planned over 53,000 sq ft, the new facilities have been designed as green buildings to work in harmony with the local environment. Solar panels will be installed to provide renewable energy while insulated building material and the use of natural light and air will ensure minimal energy consumption and carbon footprint. The structures will also be seismic-resistant and act as shelters for surrounding communities in the event of natural disasters.
General Manager for Gilgit-Baltistan and Chitral, Brigadier (retd.) Khush Muhammad said that we have a good news for deserving students for 10 to 90% concession. No one will be deprived from education only on poverty basis. Besides students and elites of the area parents were also very happy on opening of these higher secondary schools where their daughters too will get standard education along with their sons at doorstep. A large number of people and students participated in ground breaking ceremonies.