As per the Sector Development Plan (SDP)-2011-2025 a school should have a toilet for each of its 50 students but in reality now 187 students have the facility of one toilet, says a survey report.
In rural areas, only 43 per cent of the schools have improved functional toilets for girls while in urban areas 63 per cent schools have improved functional toilets for girl students.
The revelation came after a baseline survey report conducted by Development Organisation of the Rural Poor (DORP).
The DORP is piloting a project ‘RiTU project, 2017’ in Netrokona district area to enhance the Menstrual Hygiene Management (MHM) facilities for and facilitate the educational institutions to ensure those.
DORP’s Project Manager Mahbuba Haque Kumkum told this correspondent that the issue of menstrual hygiene management should be included in the textbook curriculum and supply of adequate menstrual hygiene management products should be ensured in all educational institutes free of cost.
It will help to ensure regular presence of female students in the classroom.
According to the report, around 86 per cent of female students use old cloths during menstruation.
Besides around a quarter of female students don’t go to school during menstruation.
In rural areas, only 9 per cent of female students use disposal pads whereas 87 per cent of students use old cloth in their menstrual period and 90 per cent of rural students store their menstrual cloth in a hidden place for repeated use.
In urban areas, 21 per cent girl students use disposal pads whereas 76 per cent of students use old cloth in their menstrual period, and 78 percent of rural students store their menstrual cloth in a hidden place for repeated use.
According to the survey report, only 24 per cent of school toilets were found to be clean, about one-third (32 percent) of schools had a hand washing location with available soap and water.
In urban areas, 63 per cent schools had improved functional toilets open for girl students, while 47 per cent schools had a hand washing location with available soap and water.
The survey report claimed that poor management of toilets in educational institutions affects Menstrual Hygiene Management of girl students, their attendance and educational performance.
It again impacts negatively on human capital formation and the contribution of overwhelming majority of girls to economic and social development of the country.
It said if girls lack access to affordable, hygienic menstrual products, they often use old rags, cloths or other unhygienic materials. This can lead to reproductive tract infections (RTIs) and other health conditions.