It's summer in rural Haiti as well, but small groups of students assemble to continue their studies and preparations for the bac, the State exams that may enable some to continue their studies.
Their are few seats at the few public institutions of higher learning, and public does not necessarily mean that there are no fees, and certainly that no palms must be greased for a place. What the future holds for any of these successful youth remains to be seen; I know of one family whose son earned a place as a teacher in a government high school in Port au Prince. One other youth, shown in this clip, has ambitions to study medicine and start a clinic here in the mountain zone.
The tin roof is sweltering; rain brings some relief, but with the noise there can be no lessons nor discussion. A few battered tables have survived rains and hurricanes; the church pews must serve as desks and seats for 140 children during the academic year!
We had some visitors from Digicel this summer, who have promised to try to build a 6-classroom cement structure, with capacity for 250 students. Maybe next summer, we will see this...For now, all contractors are busy with the rebuilding in the city, and, as we were told, Digicel could build TWO schools in the coastal zones for the price of ONE school here in the remote mountains.
Still, it's worth it! Persistence like that shown in this clip merits support. This region has not seen a government presence since the French were dispensed with back in 1804. Indeed, the ancestors of these students built and defended Fort Kampon, another 1000 feet up rocky paths from this school.
Students, parents and teachers of this struggling community, I salute you!