Today we learned about the plight of the common Nicaraguan student. After waking up at 5 AM, we traversed to the local private schools en masse, arriving by 7 AM (after a quick but refreshing breakfast). We split up into two groups, covering ground in the two local private high schools. Many of us took ‘home’ not only a sense of how private education in Nicaragua functions, but a lot of new friends.
The most surprising observation that we students had during our school outing was the disconnect between the Nicaraguan High School Students and their teachers. As Americans who are enrolled (mostly) in public schools in California, we attained a newfound appreciation for the amount of time and effort our teachers back home put into our education. Apart from the wonderful perspective gained, the High School experience served to push many of us out of our comfort zone, by requiring us to overcome the language barrier stacked against us.
The most inspirational person we met today must have been Simon Walters, who runs a community center for underprivileged or ‘at risk’ children. Simon told us more about the issues revolving the troubled Nicaraguan youth, and interacting with him allowed us students a chance to stretch our legs as leaders.