Mission related and personal items by Felipe Colby
Most rural villages here in western Honduras only have schools up to sixth grade. There may be the equivalent of middle schools in the municipalities and in a few larger villages. Thus it is reasonable to see that most rural students don't get past 6th grade. (A figure from a few years ago was that only 33% do go past 6th grade.)High schools are found in big cities, but not even all municipalities have high schools. In the area where I work there is only one "instituto" for four municipalities. There are some efforts to provide alternatives. One we have here is IHER (Instituto Hondureños de Educación por Radio), also known as Maestro en Casa (Teacher at home). This is a distance learning program where the students listen each night to radio programs, do work in a workbook, and then attend classes (taught mostly by volunteers) for a few hours on Saturday or Sunday.In our area there are over 300 in the program and we hope - with the help of partial scholarships from a US sister parish we hope to add 100 - 150 more. It's a small effort, but worth it.
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