Afghan girls will be allowed to appear for their high school graduation exams this week, according to an official document released by the Taliban government. The decision comes as girls have been banned from attending classes since the takeover of the country by the interim regime in August 2021.
According to two documents from the interim government’s ministry of education, obtained by The Associated Press, the decision applies to 31 out of Afghanistan’s 34 provinces. The three excluded provinces are Kandahar, Helmand, and Nimroz-having separate timetables for the school year and graduation exams at different time slots respectively.
As per the instructions of the Kabul education department, the exams for all 12th-grade female students will take place today lasting at least three hours. The reactions from female students and school teachers in this regard have been overwhelming since female students have to appear for their final exams without any prior notice to prepare for the exams.
“Appearing for such exams is utterly useless for a large majority of students lack the required information on the exam process, the study material, and selecting study fields. Being banned from attending schools and studies and showing up for the exam overnight is ridiculous,” said one student.
School teachers also criticize the move believing that such exams would undermine the ability and dynamic role women can play in society. Conducting such hasty exams brings no positive impact on the lives of the female segment of society. It does not only put women in the margins but also paves the way for a lack of a competent workforce, discouragement, and many other issues in the long term.