July 16, 2007

Children of the week

This is one group of our junior high students that are benefiting from the scholarships this year. There are two options for junior high in Salacuim. One school is private and tends to be a little more expensive with a smaller student to teacher ratio. The other school, called a telesecundaria, is what these students are attending. In the telesecundaria, the idea is for the schools to use video tapes made by the government to teach the classes. It cuts back on the costs of teachers and also allows the government to regulate the curriculum to some degree. This is a system that is used frequently in the rural areas of Guatemala. In Salacuim however, the televisions have broken and they no longer use this method. They continue to call themselves a telesecundaria but instead they have one teacher for each grade.

victor victor2
name: Victor Ical age: 14 grade: 7th
favorite subject: math favorite sport: soccer
future goal: to be an accountant



name: Warner Quib age: 14 grade: 7th
favorite subject: math favorite sport: basketball
future goal: to be a college graduate


If the kids make it to the junior high school level in Salacuim, it is quite an achievement. They have beaten some of the odds and are that much closer to a high school education, which is almost unheard of in the rural areas. If you are living in Salacuim, your education ends at 9th grade. From there it is similar to deciding on what colleges to attend for kids in the states. For a 15 year old, it can be a difficult decision to decide to leave home and study or stay with their family and work. Many of these kids will soon be faced with this same question.

yadira
name: Yadira Sagui age: 18 grade: 7th
favorite subject: math favorite sport: soccer
future goal: to be a college graduate


zuni
name: Zunilda Chen age: 15 grade: 8th
favorite subject: math favorite sport: soccer & basketball
future goal: to be a college graduate


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name: Julio Paau age: 15 grade: 9th
favorite subject: math favorite sport: soccer & basketball
future goal: to be an engineer


The work load is much more demanding at this level of schooling. The students are taking 10 different classes and also have a mandatory typing class that they must attend 20 hours a month outside of school. At this age they are also responsible for doing many of the adult duties in their family as well. For the boys, this would generally involve field work. The girls mostly work in the home cooking and cleaning. Aside from the demands being higher, the costs also double from the costs of elementary school. For many families it is not financially possible to think about junior high. Luckily all of these kids are benefiting from your support this year.

1 comment:

jcab said...

It's a big thing what you're achieving with this kids and how you are making them believe in a better tomorrow and helping them achieve their goals, thanks.