While the D2C Afterschool Tutoring Project – located at the St. Anne’s private school – has been incredibly successful, it does not adequately address the low matriculation and retention numbers that plague the community.
Once attended by 250 children each year in grades K through 12, St. Anne’s student body has dwindled significantly. Parents are unable to afford tuition and school fees, and due to the lack of funds, the school has fallen into disrepair and teachers have left to find work elsewhere. Despite excellent exam scores, if students are unable to pay school fees or there’s a lack of qualified teachers, they cannot advance to the next grade. Thus, children are not being educated and the cycle of extreme poverty continues.
To ensure access to sustainable and high-quality education in Cayes Jacmel, D2C elected to proceed with partnering with St. Anne’s to develop the Devoted to Children School.
D2C will partner with St. Anne’s to create the Devoted to Children School, with the aim of opening for the 2019-2020 academic school year. The guiding principle will be that the school is Haitian run with the guidance of outside experts, as needed, to ensure efficiency and effectiveness.
D2C will work with education specialists in Haiti to revise the curriculum currently offered at St. Anne’s to include course modules that introduce new ways of thinking and learning. English lessons will be provided and teachers will receive ongoing training throughout the year. D2C will hire an administrator to oversee the financial structure of the school, partnerships with educational experts, and any other improvements needed to the school.
Meetings with parents will be conducted regularly to help remove or work around cultural barriers and stigmas regarding education (particularly for girls). A Parent-Teachers Association will be created to provide insights into the importance of education and to form relationships between teachers and parents. Regular sessions will be held throughout the year regarding potential careers that students may pursue, the importance of higher education and vocational training.
In three to four years, D2C aims to provide a literacy program to all parents active in the Parent-Teachers Association, allowing parents to increase their ability to support their child’s education.
D2C will repair the St. Anne’s building to create a safe and welcoming environment in which to learn, including a cantina to prepare hot lunches for the students. D2C will cover the costs of operating the school so that no school fees or tuition will be required of the parents/students. As a result of this program, we believe matriculation and retention numbers will improve, students will achieve higher exam scores and economic opportunities will increase.
D2C is seeking additional financial and in-kind support for the D2C School Project. If you are interested in participating in the development and implementation of this project, please contact D2C.