They also demand allocation in the budget for their survival
The Bangladesh Kindergarten Association (BKA) has demanded that educational institutions across the country be reopened on June 13.
It also urged the government to allocate funds in the proposed national budget for kindergartens to help with their survival.
The demands were raised in a rally held in front of the National Press Club in Dhaka on Wednesday.
Earlier on June 6, Deputy Minister for Education Mohibul Hasan Chowdhury Nowfel told Dhaka Tribune that the government would not reopen schools and colleges in Bangladesh on June 13.
The decision came immediately after the Cabinet Division decided to extend the ongoing restrictions on public movement to curb further spread of Covid-19.
Pressing home the demand to reopen schools, BKA General Secretary Mizanur Rahman called on the government to allocate funds for their educational institutions in the next fiscal year.
Despite being self-financed even in the times of Covid-19, kindergartens kept on contributing to primary education, thus helping reduce the number of dropouts in the pre- and primary-level, he said.
“But a staggering 75% of the kindergarten schools in the country may have to stop operating if they don’t get financial assistance from the government,” he added.
As the educational institutions are already hit by an acute fund crunch due to the pandemic, a growing number of kindergartens are failing to pay the teachers and employees.
“Countless teachers have been forced to change their profession, which is an alarming sign for the education sector,” Rahman cautioned.
Kindergartens have been closed across Bangladesh since March 17, along with other schools, colleges, and universities, after the first cases of Covid-19, a deadly viral disease that has become a global pandemic, was reported in the country on March 8 last year.
There are around 60,000 kindergartens in Bangladesh, employing nearly one million teachers. Around 90% of the schools operate in rented houses and are dependent on tuition fees to manage expenditure, according to the BKA.