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Education needs assessment Tal Afar district – Iraq

Subject/Objective: 

Education needs assessment

Key findings: 

School and learning spaces
Among the 19 schools identified by key informants in the assessed locations, 17 have been
damaged during the conflict and 11 are not functional anymore. The schools that reopened show
concerning safety and security risks for children and school personnel (e.g.: broken windows and
glasses, debris, broken fences and gates) and do not offer an appropriate and quality learning
environment for students. 11 schools are overcrowded and 12 are running on two or more shifts
6 (such as Qadisiya school which has 1000 boys and 825 girls). Teachers used to handle classes that
exceed 45 children which strongly affects quality of class management and learning.

Access to formal and non-formal education opportunities and services
Key informants from Al Ayadiyah, Al Askari and Qadisiya reported a high rate of school drop-out
during 2017-2018 school year (up to 50%) and in all locations assessed there is an acute gap in
the provision of non-formal education services for school-aged children and vocational
opportunities for youths of the community. All key informants reported children not enrolled in
formal schools; this figure reaches 70% of school-aged girls in Al Ashiq neighborhood.
Girls but also children living with a disability, those working outside home, coming from poor
households and the ones missing civil documentation have been identified as the least likely to
have access to formal and non-formal education services. Key informants agreed to say that fees
related to school enrollment and attendance, distance between home and learning sites, child
marriage and pregnancy, household chores as well as violence and discrimination at school and
lack of safety of learning facilities represent major barriers for girls to access education. As for
boys, child labor, poor quality of teaching, disability and/or illness as well as years of
unenrollment have been outlined as significant obstacles. Fees related to school enrollment and
attendance, distance between home and learning sites as well as a lack of safety on the way to
and within the schools are barriers faced by both groups. In this regards, key informants from
seven different locations mentioned the presence of landmines and UXO on pathways leading to
schools. In the absence of a safe and affordable transportation way, some parents and caregivers
are not willing to send their children to school and indirectly expose them to protection risks.

Psychosocial well-being of school-aged boys and girls
All key informants from the 9 locations assessed noticed important change in children’ behavior
induced by the conflict and long-lasting displacements. Increased violence against younger/other
children, unwillingness to go to school, disrespectful and aggressive behaviors, sadness and
decreased support to family members have been identified as main psychosocial reactions. Key
informants of Tawa Bash, Al Ayadiyah and Kifah Al Janoubi also outlined an increase in risky
sexual behavior and substance abuse as well as willingness of some out of school children and
adolescents to join armed groups and forces.

Teaching personnel
All key informants interviewed reported an acute shortage of available and qualified teaching
personnel. In Kifah Al Janoubi, Al Sada, Malah, Al Ayadiyah and Tawa Bash less than 25% of
teachers are currently working in the schools compared to pre-crisis time. In the other locations
assessed this rate doesn’t exceed 50%. Shortage of women teachers is particularly acute. The
latest as well as teachers certified from the Ministry of Education (MoE) and the ones mastering
7 specific subjects (such as mathematics) have been identified by key informants as the most
needed currently to improve quality of learning environment and increase access of children to
education. In Al Askary, Malah, Al Ayadiyah and Tawa Bash less than 25% of teachers have
received a salary from the MoE in the past three months.

Assessment Report: 
Assessment Questionnaire: 
Publicly Available
Assessment Data: 
Publicly Available
Operations(s)/Webspace(s): 
Assessment Date(s): 
17 Mar 2019
Status: 
Report completed
Population Type(s): 
Children
Cluster(s)/Sector(s): 
Location(s): 
Iraq