Many people in developed countries take for granted their easy access to quality education, but there are millions of children who struggle daily to find someone to teach them.
One country that has had their education crippled by poverty, crime and lack of government is Honduras. Located in Central America, just east of Guatemala, Honduras is about the size of the state of Virginia and has an average population just over eight million. Of those eight million, 65 percent of them live below the poverty line, earning an average salary of $1,200 in American currency. With many families struggling to get by, almost 100,000 children drop out of school each year and are forced into the workplace to help their families make ends meet.
For the students who do stay in school, the experience is frustrating. The average time it takes a student to finish first through sixth grade is over 9 years. According to the Global Exchange, over 30 percent of students don’t finish primary school without repeating grades.
The educational system in Honduras only covers about 87 percent of school-age children, while the remaining 13 percent have no access to education at all, leaving them unable to find the education they need to move forward in life. Because Honduras limits their access to free education to the sixth grade, poor families can’t send their children to school beyond that. Only 30 percent of students even attend high school and many are unable to finish. The students who are able to continue their education do so without high equality educators. Nearly 40 percent of the teachers in Honduras only receive basic training, leaving them unable to get the maximum out of each child’s potential.
A good, solid education is what molds the minds of children and puts them on a path to success for the rest of their lives. Poverty and lack of education go hand and hand, and if other countries recognize this and invest in education, it will benefit both the children and the world they grow into.
- Taylor Schaefer