Romanian children are underperforming due to outdated schools and a rickety health service, the World Bank says.
The bank last week announced a 100 million euro loan that will benefit 55 schools and 100 buildings across Romania.
The loan comes as part of the Safer, Inclusive, and Sustainable Schools Project, it said in a statement.
Its loan is to upgrade schools to modern standards for safety, resilience, inclusion, sustainability, and digital access.
„A child born in Romania today is expected to be only 58% as productive as they could be if they had access to better education and health services,” said Tatiana Proskuryakova, World Bank Country Manager for Romania.
The project will be implemented by the education ministry and will address development challenges related to school infrastructure, demonstrate the impact of investing in safer and modern schools and establish the institutional foundations for efficient and strategic long-term investment.
„Romania has a high proportion of school buildings that fail to meet safety, basic sanitary, and energy efficiency standards,” Alanna Simpson, World Bank Lead Disaster Risk Management Specialist was quoted as saying.
Today, more than 1,000 schools around the country are at high risk of severe damage or collapse in an earthquake or do not meet modern fire codes, sanitation, and air quality requirements, the statement said.
Romania is one of the countries in the EU most at risk from earthquakes, with hundreds of lives lost and tens of thousands of buildings damaged in earthquakes in the last 200 years – a situation that will only be made worse by the impacts of climate change.