High rise compound walls give Jahra schools ‘prison-like’ look

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Bid to avert truancy, theft

KUWAIT CITY, Aug 13: Behind the towering concrete walls, some schools open their doors to female students, and the educational journey continues in that way, in an atmosphere that brings sadness to female teachers and students, and contradicts the elements of the attractive educational environment that all educational institutions in the world call for, reports Al-Rai daily.

Towering the schools compound walls that do not exceed the number of fingers on one hand in the Jahra area, and some other educational areas were rejected — according to an educational source — by the former Minister of Education Nouria Al-Sabeeh in 2009 because of their unacceptable external appearance. The source told the daily “the height of the opaque concrete walls in these schools is very exaggerated, and contradicts the elements of an attractive educational environment, as these walls leave a harsh psychological impact on the student, and leave an unpleasant memory of the place where she spent most of her school days.”

The source said, “The educational facilities sector has the sufficient budget to replace these fences before the comprehensive return in the next academic year, especially since the number of schools with high walls is limited and does not represent any financial burden on the ministry,” stressing the need to replace them to be like other schools with an aesthetic view acceptable for the educational environment. At the same time, the source called for not paying attention to the unacceptable justifications made by some under the pretext of the conservative society and the privacy of the people, as there is no violation of privacy or an infringement on the preservation and evidence of the presence of dozens of other girls’ schools in the same area with decent compound walls that give comfort to the eye of the beholder.

For their part, engineers in the educational facilities sector spoke of the reasons for raising the height of the walls, stressing that the most important factor is to prevent the female students from escaping and to avoid incidents of theft that schools in the region are exposed to from time to time.

The engineers admitted that the external appearance of the schools is really ugly, and the justifications for their elevation of their presence between the houses are rejected, as all girls’ schools are located between the houses and no complaints were observed in this regard, noting that removing them and replacing them with other walls is easy, and it does not cost the facilities sector anything if it has the desire to do so.

The psychological counselor at the Ministry of Education, Huda Al- Haddad, described the height of the walls of some girls’ schools as one of the negative things that leave the student with nothing but bad memories that will have psychological repercussions in the long run. The authorities gave five justifications for the high rise compound walls saying 12 schools in Jahra were robbed and vandalized, the frequent escape of female students, complaints from parents about the privacy of female students, desire of its school administrations to protect the privacy of teachers and the location of the schools between the houses makes them vulnerable to onlookers.

This news has been read 14316 times!

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