In Nicaragua, the average school-day ends at noon– resulting in limited time in the classroom and a lower quality of education when compared to the developed world. 37% of Nicaraguans between the ages of 15-24 do not have an education beyond primary school. This number increases in rural areas of the country, such as in Laguna de Apoyo, where costs of transportation and long distances to school impede a student’s right to education.
The Peace Project strives to address the underlying barriers that prevent access to education such as transportation, and educational costs, while reinforcing the school day’s learning with after-school tutorials. Through focusing on access and quality, we believe that education can play a fundamental role in alleviating poverty. Resulting in increased participation in higher education and the skills needed to exceed in the work force.
The Becados Program began in the 2015 school year and funded 15 scholarships for community youth to attend Laura Vicuña, the local secondary private school. This we expanded the Becados Program to provide 21 scholarships. Each scholarship covers the costs of tuition, a uniform, transportation, and school supplies. As our Becados are getting older, we strive to support them through university. In 2017 our first Becado enrolled at the Universidad de Managua pursuing a degree in Systems Engineering.
We provide additional academic support at Laura Vicuña through after-school tutorials in English and Mathematics. Laura Vicuña is a private school located on the rim of the crater that serves over 500 students in grades K-12. The school ranks third for educational quality in the Masaya region and it’s location within the crater increases accessibility for local youth. Our Education Intern leads English classes that enhance students’ reading, writing, and speaking capabilities. The curriculum encourages students to think critically about the world we live in while gaining a greater appreciation of the Laguna’s natural environment. A local teacher leads Mathematics classes that align with Laura Vicuña’s academic curriculum. As part of The Becado Program, scholarship recipients attend the weekly tutorials, and they are open to the rest of the school.
Capacity Building at Laura Vicuña
Teaching afterschool tutorials to our Becados has inspired us to have a greater impact at their school. The school currently has one English teacher that works in both the primary and secondary school. To strengthen the English language program we are currently seeking applications for a Full Time English Teacher sponsored by The Peace Project. The chosen candidate will teach in the primary school and work alongside Laura Vicuña’s current English teacher in developing the annual curriculum, which will then be reinforced in our afterschool program. This effort strives to improve the quality of English language instruction at the school and expand our reach to students outside of the Becados program.