The Raqqa Civil Council has established many new schools, and has rehabilitated others, in preparation for the new academic year.
The Bassam Ziwar school is an example of a school in Raqqa being left in tatters following years of ISIS rule and the liberation battles that took their toll on much of the city. The young students and staff at the school are keen on accelerating the clean-up and rehabilitation process so as to get the academic year underway, following 3-4 years of hiatus caused by the ISIS occupation of the city.
“The teaching staff at Bassam Ziwar School has cleared and cleaned part of the rubble, but there is still rubble and debris inside and outside the school. We request the help of the families to help us clear the remaining debris and rubble”, said a teacher at Bassam Ziwar School.
The rehabilitation process, however, is not only confined to the reconstruction of infrastructure, but it is also focused on addressing the negative impact of the former ISIS ideology and rule that prevailed over Raqqa between 2014-2017. The Raqqa Civil Council has set its sights on eradicating the roots of ISIS’ ideology in the city through its educational initiatives, as the terrorist group had used schools to indoctrinate and train children for its own criminal activities..
“Today, which marks the start of a new academic year, the Raqqa Civil Council is working to erase ISIS ideology from the minds of these pupils, under the notion that liberation from ISIS can only be attained through education and learning”, remarked the reporter from Al Hurra Channel.
It is estimated that the Raqqa Civil Council, along with the help of the International Coalition, has managed to restore 43 schools in the city.
According to the records provided from the educational department in Raqqa, that there are 125,000 potential pupils in the city, while just over 70,000 pupils are currently attending schools in the city and its outskirts.