Push to increase women teachers in rural Yemen
Mohammed Al-Samei (writer), Ashraf Al-Muraqab (photographer)
A new study conducted by Ibhar Corporation and funded by the Response Project indicated there are several obstacles obstructing the employment of women teachers in rural areas such as lack of women students in these areas who finished college, a lack of enough jobs for women in general and a difficulty sending women teachers to remote areas.
The study said women teachers in urban areas received a third of the new jobs given to teachers in Yemen while women teachers in rural areas received one-fifth of teaching jobs.
Several rural parts of Yemen lack enough women teachers because few women enroll in school or receive education as their families prevent them from studying.
Iftikhar Abdu Ali, a women student in a secondary school in the outskirts of Taiz, said rural areas desperately need women teachers. She said there are no women teachers in her school. She said it is because there is an absence in women’s education and because classes for women are sometimes restricted to certain schools.
Ali said only few women living in countryside were able to attend college. The poverty and hard circumstances some families live in and the lack of awareness about the importance of education for girls leads some families to prevent their girls from attending school.
Ali said she expects the number of women students in rural areas to increase, which will positively affect education in countryside and will result in an increased number of women teachers respectively.
Mohammed Tawaf, the undersecretary of the Ministry of Education, said there is a dire need for women teachers in rural areas. He said it is possible to dedicate 50 percent of jobs in rural areas to women.
In a workshop to formulate and follow the policy of hiring 30 percent of women teachers for jobs in rural areas, Tawaf said 50 percent of the state’s employees follow the Education Sector. The workshop, organized by Ibhar for Childhood and Creativity Corporation, invited representatives from various organizations to attend and discuss education.
Representatives from the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Civil Service, the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Local Administration, Ibhar Organization and Istiiaba Organization stated Sept. 8 the importance of qualifying women to be hired as teachers.
The representatives suggested implementing procedures to hire women in rural areas that lack women teachers. Among these procedures is specifying the needs of each district based on the required specialization, in coordination with the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Civil Service and the Ministry of Local Administration.