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Back to school, but not for all of Syria’s children

DOUMA, Syria — There are fewer areas in active combat in Syria now, and as a result more children are going back to school this year, the government says, putting the number at 4 million.

Keen to project an image of normalcy, the government said it has rehabilitated over 400 schools over the last two months alone and called on students to return to wearing school uniforms, shed in years of conflict.

Loss of families’ livelihoods, pervasive poverty, trauma and continued insecurity — even in areas where fighting has ended — as well as severe aid funding cuts are among the biggest obstacles facing Syria’s children.

Some 2 million kids in Syria remain out of school. Nearly one out of three Syrian schools is out of service. Some 180,000 qualified teachers have left.