The name of our school is Abdul Malik khotay Swabi. In our village khotay swabi this is the only primary school in the area, we don’t have any secondary or high school in the area. Our village has nearly 300 hundred families living in the area and nearby.
Our school has the strength of +170 kids, both boys and girls, since we don’t have any girl’s school in the area. Nearly one third of the strength is of girls in our school.
The school came into existence in 1997 when one of the local landlord showed his generosity by donating two kanal (approximately 1000 sq. yard) to the government. To acknowledge the generosity of the landlord the school has been named after him, hence the name Abdul Malik khotay .Because our beloved govt is busy spending most of the money on making atom bomb. Purchasing missiles, rockets, submarines so Pakistan can become a bastion of Islam that is the reason they don’t have enough resources to buy land for our school. I have heard most of the state schools in our country has been constructed on donated or charity land.
Our school is approximately 5 kilometre from the main city centre of swabi. Since the land is donated by landlord Abdul Malik, the peon in our school is also employed by his recommendation. Although our peon is equally a poor guy like the rest of us studying in the school. He takes care of our school honestly and diligently. His name is Ghulam Mohammad but everybody calls him Carter because everybody says he looked like then American president jimmy carter.
Our school building consists of two rooms and one small hallway, the rest it’s all a yard. Since our school starts from nursery and goes up till class fifth .One room is allocated for class fifth and fourth, means shared by them, while another room is shared by class three and two. Our teachers has devised a way of managing two classes in one room by making both classes sit opposite to each other facing the wall. Class one sits in the hallway while the nursery kids sit in the yard maybe that’s why they are called lower class. Although it’s strange for me because we all are kids of lower class parents. We don’t have any chairs and benches in our classes, most of us sit on coarse rugs or plastic sheets. The kids sitting outside in yard or hallway doesn’t even have this facility to sit on, I have heard this is the story of all state schools in our beloved Pakistan .The oldest high school of our area which was built in the year 1890 then 40% of the children use to sit on rugs and plastic sheets . Twenty years back they use to have benches and chairs in the same school. All the state primary school has children of lower class. Middle class and upper middle class children go to private schools. Like Within one square kilo meter of swabi there are nearly 30 private schools to cater to the needs of upper and middle class Children.
We have two teachers to look after and teach the whole school. It was in the newspaper they say that there are approximately 25000 school in the whole of our province operating like our school. How we are taught by two teachers I am not sure but they have sticks in their hands, but we do love them. Normally lunch to them is served from our home. We get quite a few days off, when the teachers have some important work which is pretty often or when the weather is bad like raining ,hailstorm or when our parents needs us on the farms to help them .
Our school has poor local people studying in it or children whose parents has come from areas like Bajaur , Mohmand , Dir , Swat . These people along with the locals work on the fields of the big landlords. We could be expelled by them anytime they want ,although it doesn’t happen that often but the possibility is always there, hanging on our heads like sword of Damocles . We are helpless internally displaced people from our lands. Lands which belonged to our forefather has been rented out to the state guests like Uzbek, Chechens Tajik Arabs by our beloved country.
Our school witnessed different leaders, ruling Pakistan from Nawaz Shariff to Sherpao, from mullah (clergy) to nationalists but nobody has paid any heed to it .Once a non-governmental organisation promised us shoes, that was the most cheerful and bustling day of our school so many parents came to register their kids in school but unfortunately they never turned up and most of the children and parents went back home disappointed. Our teacher said that the people of NGO most probably Loaded elephant size of shoes on the tiny waist of an ant. The ant is crawling slowly towards its destination.
Underneath the shadow of this flag, there are two classes.one called poor and lower middle class, while another upper middle and rich class
STORY TRANSLATED BY MONA