It is almost impossible to get a good education in Haiti. For the poorest children it is very difficult to get any education at all. Only about half of Haiti’s children ever attend school. Most who do, never graduate from primary school; and only 38 of every thousand students complete high school. Although education is technically compulsory, public schools are few and far between and terribly overcrowded, sometimes with over a hundred students in a single class. As a result, about 80% of all students attend private schools. Poor families will go without food or other necessities to pay tuition for a child to attend a school that is also often overcrowded and where the quality of education is usually quite poor. Still, the tuition and fees these schools charge put them out of reach for poorer families.
Beyond Borders helps Haitians address issues through school networks, teacher trainings, and the formation of parent teacher committees that are involved in school management. We work in remote and rural areas where schools are few and far between, but the communities are ready to use their own human resources to address their needs. This approach prevents dependency and promotes an education system where teachers are equipped and empowered to teach, and more students have the opportunity to go to school.
Activities in the Schools Alive Network
- Training teachers on using the Haitian national curriculum of the Ministry of Education
- Creating book banks to give children greater access to books
- Forming school management committees consisting of parents, teachers, and directors
- Providing teacher training in classroom management, lesson planning, and teaching materials to teachers such as geometry instruments
- Encouraging schools to share innovative ideas and best practices such as school gardens
- Working with school management committees to create codes of conduct for each school in the network