LAHORE - Plan Pakistan and Punjab School Education Department have entered into an agreement for the provision of adequate financial, human resource and material support to rehabilitate 400 affected primary schools in Layyah, Muzaffargarh and Rajanpur districts. Punjab Secretary School Education Department Aslam Kamboh and Country Director Plan Pakistan Haider W Yaqub signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in this regard at Civil Secretariat on Tuesday. The project shall be implemented through a joint effort of government of the Punjab, through Secretary Schools and his nominated representatives at provincial level and through the EDOs (Education) at district level. The overall objective of the project is to realise childrens rights to education and ensuring that children are back in schools after the floods. As many as 58,500 male and female students of these schools will be benefited from this project. According to the MoU details, the geographical scope of this project are the districts of Layyah, Muzaffargarh & Rajanpur and the project shall be implemented in selected urban and rural union councils. About 400 primary schools in these districts affected by the floods will be rehabilitated. This will include minor repairs, rehabilitation of water and sanitation facilities and provision of school supplies and School Councils strengthening. Plan Pakistan will help to constitute and/or strengthen School Committees (SCs) and Students Representative Councils (SRCs) at each school for community and child participation and better liaison. It will also design, finance and implement an awareness-raising and advocacy campaign on childrens rights and their protection together with School Education Department and other stakeholders. School Education Department shall help Plan Pakistan in identifying the partially destroyed / damaged schools for the purpose of rehabilitation. Assignment of one senior level Officer as Focal Person at provincial headquarters and one Officer at each of the project districts to support the project activities will also be done. The MoU agrees that through ensuring a safe teaching and learning environment that engages local education authorities, parents, teachers and children themselves, the students will be supported in the return to normalcy, and their right to education will also be upheld. Interventions focus on access to safe drinking water and sanitation facilities in schools, accompanied by health and hygiene awareness sessions and materials to promote healthy behaviour of both teachers and children, rehabilitation and repairs to damaged schools, including boundary walls and provision of temporary learning centres in schools where required, and ensuring improved access to adequate education facilities that are equipped with basic school furniture, play equipment and materials, and solar panels to make use of renewable energy are also part of this MoU. Teachers, parents and childrens involvement in school planning processes will be fostered through school management and childrens committees capacitated to develop and monitor school development plans. To facilitate their return to school, boys and girls will be supported with stationery and uniforms supplied directly or through grants to families. Cash for work will also provide basic subsistence livelihood support to parents during this interim period, while encouraging community commitment and support in the repair and rehabilitation components and childrens continued education. Activities will be strengthened by working with and advocacy towards government and communities, to encourage childrens return to schools, and ensuring teaching presence in the primary schools of the target districts.