Within the Paraíso Neighborhood there are 4 public elementary schools with around 2,000 students. The one public middle school has an enrollment of about 400 students. Unfortunately, there are no high schools in the area. Students have to take a bus and travel to a different part of the city if they want to get a high school degree. Engadi dreams of one day having a high school in the neighborhood, but for now we work with what we have. We serve the local public school system by offering teacher training and classroom development. Over the years we have served the schools simply by painting their facilities or repairing minor damages. Recently we completed a project to build new classrooms for a preschool space. The Guatemalan school system goes from January to October.
Lack of training and resources greatly impact the quality of education that students receive in the Paraíso Neighborhood. For this reason, Engadi partners with local public school teachers to train and equip them. Engadi provides Biblically-based values and profesional development classes to teachers in el Paraíso. These classes focus on training teachers in values that can optimize their classroom performance and the quality of material that they deliver to their students. Teachers from the United States periodically come down to share their knowledge and pedagogical tools with the local teachers, as well.
Remodeling & Construction
Although the government built the schools decades ago, little has been done to maintain the building or upgrade the facilities. Our first foot in the door with the schools was by meeting a physical need they had. We were asked to simply paint the classrooms. Through painting the classrooms we built a relationship and trust with the directors and teachers. That allowed us opportunities to share more in-depth about God’s truth. Although we didn’t fund it, we did assist in replacing the roof on several of the classrooms in some of the public schools. Our biggest project in recent years was to build 5 classrooms for a new preschool. They were finished in time for the 2022 school year and will open up space for more children to come to school. We worked with a local graffiti artist to paint the classrooms in a fun, bright way.