(MENAFN - Jordan Times) The Ministry of Planning and International Cooperation on Monday signed a JD1.6 million grant agreement with UNICEF to help the government accommodate Syrian students in public schools.
The grant will cover the cost of the students' school fees, books, make-up lessons and social activities in addition to paying for the rental of school buildings to accommodate the increased number of students.
There are currently 5,500 registered Syrian students in schools across Jordan especially in Amman, Mafraq, Irbid and Zarqa, according to a statement from the ministry.
Minister of Planning and International Cooperation Jafar Hassan said the agreement is part of the ministry's efforts to support the education sector, particularly in light of the difficult situation the Kingdom is going through due to the influx of Syrians, which started in March 2011.
He added that Iraqis residing in Jordan are also placing "huge" pressure on the Ministry of Education.
Hassan highlighted the ministry's efforts to coordinate with donor countries to provide technical and financial support to different sectors in the Kingdom, such as education, health, energy and water, to assist the country in overcoming challenges posed by the continuous flow of Syrians into Jordan.
UNICEF Representative in Jordan Dominique Hyde commended Jordan's efforts to support Syrians, noting that the agreement will help alleviate the burden on the public education system and enable Syrian students to continue their education at the same time, according to the statement.
Earlier this year, the education ministry decided to accept Syrian students in the Kingdom's public schools at the start of the new term on February 6, regardless of whether their parents have work permits.
The ministry also exempted them from school fees and the cost of books.