It looks as though we will soon be able to extend our little school to include the 8 to 13 age-range. We hope to be able to purchase the necessary Licence at the end of this year and can then begin to make progress. The school will be based at Casa Walsingham and will be for those of our children who cannot, for a variety of reasons, attend the state schools. Many of them have behavioural difficulties and the schools, where classes are very large, cannot cope so simply expel them.
Without education these children have no future and will become prime candidates for the many bandas (gangs) that control the shanty-towns. Our methods have been proven to work with our 14+ pupils so there is every reason to expect that they will work with the 8 to 13 age-range.
The need is urgent and we have been waiting to obtain a Licence for some time so the news that this should soon happen is very welcome. At present we have approx 30 children who could benefit from the school but numbers could vary according to how many of the Venezuelan refugee children we take in. The need there continues to be great and, at the moment, there is no sign of the situation improving. These children are also in need of education and will be able to take advantage of our Primary School.
The pupils’ work will be validated by one of the state schools, so the children will be in the same position as those who attend the state schools. They will be able to go all the way through the educational process from 8 years onwards and finally obtain their High School Certificate. Good news indeed!