Barra de Potosí School Thanks CPJ and SMA Residents
By Barbara Erickson
Imagine going to a school where your lessons come by satellite, but the school is too poor to have equipment to display them. That was the situation at the tiny telesecundaria in Barra de Potosí until Computadoras Pro Jóvenes (CPJ) was made aware of the school’s plight by several San Miguel residents who winter in this poor but lovely fishing village just south of Zihuatanejo. All 44 students; the three maestros, Felix, César, and Ariatne; the school director, Imelda; and members of the parents association gathered to celebrate the receipt of three renewed laptops donated by CPJ for use in their classrooms. Everyone was appreciative of this gift since Escuela Frida Kahlo previously had no way of showing students the addendums to the programs they need to augment their tele-teaching curriculum. The computers work with a projector system, so now the students can actually see the matching workbook lessons they are supposed to have in their textbooks.
Small and off-the-beaten track schools such as this one in the state of Guerrero never seem to receive the state funding needed to meet the basic educational needs of the students. This year, as a result of the uproar in Guerrero due to the disappearance of 43 students, it has been worse. The teachers are still waiting for updated textbooks that reflect the current tele-teaching curriculum. But these teachers are resourceful and have borrowed CDs from other schools, and now, thanks to CPJ and all those who donate their used laptops, they can match what they receive on their teles! CPJ did more than just refurbish the laptops; they also supplied wonderful educational programs such as “Leer con Pipo,” along with maps and an encyclopedia. Everyone clamored to get to see all the programs as soon as possible.
CPJ and its dedicated core of volunteers have provided more than 900 computers to over 80 schools in and around San Miguel. Nearly 300 laptops have been provided to scholarship students through the Biblioteca, Mujeres en Cambio, Jóvenes Adelante, and other programs. They are now, thanks to several of our caring and involved neighbors, starting to help the impoverished schools in Barra de Potosi, which has become a favored beach vacation destination for many Sanmiguelenses. Providing access to the wide world of information available today by means of a few gently used laptops will change the lives of this year’s 44 students in Barra de Potosí, just as it has changed so many lives in San Miguel. A big round of applause and thank you to CPJ can be heard floating over the waves now.
Barra de Potosí is a tiny fishing village about 25 minutes south of Zihuatanejo. Nearby Playa Blanca is a popular beach vacation spot for San Miguel residents. The community works hard to support their schools and receives help from the winter expat community to maintain the physical plants of the schools. The expat community also raises funds to provide modest financial help for all post-secondary students that continue their education, despite the long hours of travel and high transportation fees to get to preparatory school or university.
To find out more about CPJ and how you can help, please visit: http://www.cpjmex.org/
To learn more about Barra de Potosí, visit http://www.lastbestbeach.com.