BEIRUT, Sept. 25 (Xinhua) -- The Lebanese schools braced for the new academic year with a large influx of the Syrian students who fled the conflict in their country in haste and do not even have the required documents to apply.
A school principal in southern Lebanon said he is "puzzled" over how to run the school during this year as "we were forced to accept some 230 Syrian students in our school."
He said that the number of Syrian students is almost equal to their Lebanese peers, which "represents a very serious challenge."
Mohammad Abou Ali, the school principal in the West Bekaa said he faces difficulties in the register of the Syrian students.
"The problem of Syrian students is that most of them do not have the required documents such as a valid ID or last year's certificate of education," he told Xinhua.
"We accept all of them on condition that they will provide the necessary document at a later stage," he said, asserting that "The Lebanese Ministry of Education ruled that we have to accept all the (Syrian) students even if we are to open new classes."
In some private schools, the high influx even forced the postponement of the beginning of the new academic year till next month.
Wissam Soueid, the principal of Al Iman Islamic private school said that his schools have accepted since the beginning of the Syrian crisis "thousands of Syrian students, but this year the number has tripled, which forced us to go on the two-shift system. "
"We are working with the aid agencies to cover the costs, particularly as the United Nations High Commissioners for Refugees (UNHCR) does not share the burden with the private schools," he added.
According to the UNHCR, the number of children among the Syrian refugees is around 350,000, while the Lebanese Ministry of Education says the number of Lebanese students is only about 320, 000.
There are currently over 739,000 refugees in Lebanon. Lebanon's officials have repeatedly called on the international community to help Lebanon accommodate the high influx of Syrian refugees.