Some Afghan girls return to school in Kabul

This is Seyede-Zahra. She says she wants to become successful so she can make her country prosper…

She’s one of many Afghan girls who returned to primary schools with gender-segregated classes on Saturday. But her older counterparts faced an anxious wait with no clarity over if and when they would be able to resume their studies at the secondary school level.

Most schools in the capital Kabul have stayed shut since the Taliban captured the city just over a month ago.

Taliban officials say they will not return to the fundamentalist policies - including a ban on girls receiving an education - when they last ruled Afghanistan from 1996 to 2001.

They have now promised that girls will be able to study - but only in segregated classrooms.

Nazife, a teacher at a private school in Kabul which had mixed classrooms before the Taliban takeover, said they had made changes in order to reopen.

"We don't have a problem in our school. The hours are different for boys and girls. Girls study in the morning and boys in the afternoon. Male teachers teach boys and female teachers teach girls."

However, there was uncertainty for many other girls at the school, which teaches at both the primary and secondary levels.

On Friday the Education Ministry said boys' secondary schools would soon reopen, but made no mention of girls.

Hadis Rezaei, who teaches the school's female secondary-level pupils, said morale is low as students await announcements from the government.

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid told the local Bakhtar News Agency on Saturday that arrangements were being made to reopen girls' secondary schools, but he gave no date.

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