School Building Nears Completion in Bolivia
Early next year, NPH Bolivia will offer an improved level of education and greater security for our students.
Reported by Jamila Noeprick
Communication Officer, NPH Bolivia
November 16, 2015
With the 2015 school year coming to an end, our children have two things to look forward to. They have two months of vacation, and also the completion of our second school building at the end of this year. In the long run the extension of our on-site NPH school will offer an improved level of education and greater security for our students.
At the beginning of February 2016, our on-site school will open its doors to 63 young boys and girls. The two-building school, named after Fr. Wasson, will be officially recognized as a “colegio de convenio con la iglesia”. This is a state-financed school with a church directorate. These types of schools are renowned in Bolivia and referred to as “escuelas populares Don Bosco”.
Kindergarten, preschool and primary school will make use of the new facility. Seven year-old Lauren* is one of the future pupils. The second-grader is currently the best in her class and is really looking forward to the school change. “I’m happy that we will have our own school next year”, Lauren says. The current situation for her and her classmates involves going to the primary school in Burgos with our transport at 8 am and returning at 12:15 pm. Even though Burgos is relatively close to our house, the primary students are losing 30 minutes each day. This is time they could use for other things, and transportation costs will be minimized in the future. Lauren also hopes that with the school change they will receive better teachers. “Some of the teachers are nice while others not,” Lauren says.
The choice of the teachers is an important task for our Education Coordinator and also future principal Jesús Campo. “With the opening of our own school we can choose the teachers. We can search for enthusiastic and well trained educators who are willing to transfer knowledge to our kids. We can set higher standards for our children, control their achievements’ on our own, and interfere immediately when it’s necessary. This will improve the quality of the education,” Jesús explains enthusiastically.
The quality of the education level will also be improved through the increase in number of teachers. At the moment the primary school in Burgos employs only three teachers for six classes. That means two classes are not only sharing a classroom, but they are also sharing a teacher. With the new school year this will change. Six teachers for six classes, a library with a PC lab, and the Education Coordinator will all find a place at the two school buildings. And also our volunteers Michael Wechter, music instructor – and Daniela Albuja, private tutor, can finally teach our children in a learning environment.
“I’m glad that we will have the second school building. Our kids can learn in a safe environment they already know. And we could have a better eye on them. Leaving the school without permission would be immediately recognized and no longer be possible,” our Ecuadorian volunteer said. “I also could talk with the teachers on a regular basis about the needs of the children and use the teacher’s materials for my private lessons.”
During the holidays, the relocation of the library and the office of Jesus Campo will take place. Nevertheless, we still lack some furniture for the school buildings. We need to equip the three new classrooms desks for students and teachers, and cabinets, while the future library and PC lab need 10 computer desks, tables, chairs and shelves for the books.
With your help we can soon have our classrooms up and ready. For more information on how to help contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
*Name changed to protect privacy.
Above: The construction site of the second school building
Below: a new classroom takes shape – outside and inside, Lauren doing homework