The directorate general of education of Salahaddin province has decided to reopen doors of school village it had shut earlier due to the limited number of students which should resort to another nearby village.
The closure of Al-Radhi primary school and transfer of its equipment to another area sparked discontent of the villagers who told KirkukNow the students took mid-term exams and due to take final exams in two months, end of May per education year calendar.
The village of Shoraw (Hama Gharib) is located with Daquq district, 44 km south of Kirkuk, home to 97,000 population under Kirkuk province, yet administratively is part of Duz Khurmatu district, the only disputed town within Salahaddin (Saladin, Salahuddin) province.
Ghalib Mohammed, member of village council, said the students are back to class as the order to shut the school was cancelled.
The district of Duz is home to 120,000 Kurds, Arabs and Turkmens per official statistics in 2014 while non official figures show it has hit 200,000 lately.
The predominantly Sunni province of Salahaddin, about 135 kilometers north of the Iraqi capital, once home for Saddam Hussein, is under the control of Iraq's Shia-led paramilitary forces known as al-Hashid al-Shabi, the Popular Mobilization Forces PMF.
The equipment which has been transferred to another school in a village 25 km away from the village, has been returned to Razi school.
“The school has been shut based on reports by supervisors under the excuse that we had small number of students yet fortunately the order has been cancelled and the students are back to school,” said Tariq Ahmed, director general of Kurdish education in Duz Khurmatu district of Salahaddin province.
Video: The council of the village and director of Kurdish education discuss school issue
Alike all other sectors, education sector is divided in the disputed territories between Baghdad which funds schools teaching curriculums in Arabic language while the Kurdistan Regional Government KRG funds schools in Kurdish language.
The residents of Hama Gharib village have been three times displaced due to the security gap in the region.
In mid-February, over 1,500 villagers were asked by the security forces to leave their villages in Beji district of Salahaddin province due to the “security vacuum” in the region.
337 families have evacuated five villages to center of Makhool sub-district, adjacent to Hawija district of Kirkuk province from the east and Anbar province from the west.
Those five villages, mainly Sunni Arabs, are displaced for the second time after they were forced to escape Islamic State in Iraq and Syria ISIS atrocities in 2014 up to end of 2017 when Iraqi forces regained control of Tikrit, center of Salahaddin province.
The villages located northwest of Tikrit are a bit far from the last security checkpoints by Salahaddin security forces which is a vast wide area.