Due to an increase in terrorist activity over the past few years, the Pakistani government now requires security cameras to be installed in all schools.
Already, shortly after the Peshawar school attack in 2014, all of Pakistan’s schools were required to construct eight-foot-high boundary walls topped with razor wire. Amin’s school only had 6-foot walls at the time, so the needed changes were made.
CCTV cameras were also being highly recommended. Now they are compulsory. Of course, this is a huge expense for a school that depends mainly on donations!
A short news article from three years ago* in the Episcopal News Service website expressed it well. After listing the security measures being imposed by the government at that time, they added (quoting from a Peshawar
church news site):
“ ‘All the Christian educational and other institutions have already taken the so-called security measures but they are highly inadequate,’ Frontier News says. ‘The arms and ammunition, security cameras, walk-through gates, barriers and the armed guards are an expensive commodity, and far beyond the reach of poor and highly vulnerable Christian communities.’ ”
Principal Amin is required to install 4 Closed Circuit Television security cameras, two inside the courtyard, and two outside the front entrance. The two in the courtyard will monitor the interior classroom doors.
The two exterior cameras will capture video in both directions, up and down the street.
Amin hopes the cost will not exceed $200 to $250. The CCTV cameras are supposed to be installed by April 10 when the school’s registration is renewed.
Besides the cost of the camera system, there’s a $300 total fee for the school registration renewal, with part of it due by April 10th as a deposit. The registration renewal process will continue for 2-3 months.
The registration fee covers things like filing fees for legal documents for all the teachers, having the floor plan (“school map”) drawn of the school, and health certifications.
The deadline is here, and more help is needed. Please be praying for this need to be met, and any donations you care to contribute will be greatly appreciated.
Meanwhile, Amin has recently accepted two new students into the school, “very poor children”. His heart is so big, he would gladly take in even more if there was room for them.
There are now 252 students in the regular daytime classes, and another 55 in the “academy” that Amin teaches after the school session ends. This is a special afternoon/evening program for older students who were unable to regularly attend school when they were younger, and they need to catch up.
* If you’d like to read another, more recent article about school security in Pakistan, here’s one from December 2018: Gulf News Asia