Haiti Outreach also helps to build public schools in communities that have no public school. We do so with the agreement that the community or the national Ministry of Education will hire the teachers and administrators and run the school, and not Haiti Outreach. This is in keeping with our community development model of creating infrastructure projects that are sustained by the people in Haiti.
The first school we built was in 2003 with the rural community of La Jeune, about 5 miles south of Pignon. There we helped the community build the Fwa Kreyten school, which has both primary and secondary students, after they were kicked out of the building they were renting and had no place to continue their community school.
We have helped build the Lycee, the public secondary school, in Pignon in 2003 – 2004 and a few years later built a second building for this school, nearly doubling the school’s size. It was also electrified using solar power by the Engineers Without Borders students from the Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago. They have partnered with Haiti Outreach for a number of years designing projects which are overseen by the faculty and for which they can get credit.
In 2010, after two years of fundraising, individuals and the Rotary Partnership for Haiti funded the building of the Lycee for the town of La Viktwa. You can see photos of that project elsewhere on the web site. And we just inaugurated in January of 2013 the Rotary Partnership for Haiti funded public secondary school in the town of Rankit. See the recent Post about this event.
Public schools are rare in Haiti. Most schools are private, charging tuition that could be as much as 60 times what pubic schools charge, which is usually only around $8 US per year. If public schools are available, the children of poorer families will have the opportunity to attend school, which otherwise they simply could not afford to do. It also reinforces the country’s educational infrastructure and, as stated above, makes the schools sustainable by the people and government of Haiti, as it is done in other developed countries. This is in keeping with our vision and our philosophy.