The importance of good schools:
The educational dream at Pwoje Espwa is to improve the quality of the educational experience by improving student graduation rates and job placement. As such, the immediate needs and goals are to accomplish overall improvement of school buildings, and build a library and computer lab. Additionally, Espwa schools need assistance in improving the education by injecting more cooperative learning into the curriculum.
When one considers resident children, neighborhood children, trade school students, and university couple students, Pwoje Espwa Sud (PES) educates over 2,000 students each year. Our university includes students majoring in agriculture, medicine and law. Student scholarships are offered to some of our trade schools and other secondary schools. PES has six school locations which break down as follows:
Les Cayes: Preschool. Primary School. Secondary School. Vocational Training School.
Tiburon: Primary School.
Camp Perrin: Primary School.
Our Espwa Preschool was built in 2010 whereas before they shared the primary school. The children participate in two years of preschool in which they learn the basics subject areas. A typical school day for these children begins at 8:00 the morning and lasts until noon. Pat schooled students receive a hot meal each day. Approximately 350 students including enrolled-resident and non-resident students receive a meal.
Espwa Primary School
Some 400 enrolled-resident and non-resident students attend school each day and receive a hot meal. The secondary school houses grades seven through twelve. Students participate in basic subject areas including reading, writing and arithmetic in several languages including English, Creole, French, and Spanish. Teachers at this level are encouraged to participate in ongoing professional development activities. School meets from 8:00 am until 1:00 or 2:00 pm based on the grade level.
Espwa Vocational Training School
Resident children begin participating in vocational training school around age 15 in order to provide them with a formal education. The first class graduated from the Vocational Training School in 2010. The Vocational Training School offers a two-year program and typically students attend school from 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm in the afternoon. Students can choose carpentry, tailoring, and welding as their vocation.
Tiburon Primary School
Tiburon Primary School is about four hours away from PES and approximately 250 students have enrolled. None are resident children. This means that PES is effectively reaching the surrounding areas in Haiti, providing basic education and health education. As school students they receive dry rations of food each month. Although sometimes called “School for the Poor Children” Tiburon Primary School houses preschool through sixth grade.
Camp Perrin Primary School
The Camp Perrin Primary School is a mere 45 minutes away from Espwa. When compared with the four hour drive necessary to reach Tiburon Primary School, the Camp Perrin Primary School seems close by. As school students they receive dry rations of food each month. The Camp Perrin Primary School houses preschool through sixth grade and typically has 350 students enrolled.
Espwa University Student Education Programs
At Espwa University children participate in after school English classes. These classes are taught by Espwa University graduates. The children enjoy participating in art activities including dancing, singing and drawing. Health education at Espwa University includes cholera prevention dental hygiene and AIDS prevention and awareness. At the university we find house mothers who participate in weekly seminars to improve the care they provide their children. If an employee cannot read, literacy classes are provided in the afternoon at university. In addition secondary school students are found participating in CPR classes.
Providing adequate basic education for our children is only part of Free the Kids’ overall mission to nurture and care for Haiti’s abandoned and vulnerable children.
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