2011 School Year Begins!!

Monday, February 14, marked the beginning of the 2011 school year at Oasis de Esperanza and it was an exciting day for everyone!  Classes were originally to have begun January 27 but the date was postponed by the Ministry of Education, much to the disappointment of our students, they were anxious to start school.

Standing in Line for School

Pre-registration had already prepared us for a large enrollment from 2010 and when the gate opened Monday morning we were thrilled to see 413 smiling faces ready to learn (well, not everyone was smiling, the pre-K children were pretty skeptical about leaving their parents and suffered some separation anxiety).  Students were directed to their respective classrooms, met their teacher, and settled in to their new “home” for the next ten months.  Our happiness was compounded when the Ministry of Education gave an eleventh-hour approval to our application for High School grades.  We had applied for approval of 7th grade and were surprised to learn that not only had the school been approved for 7th grade but also 8th and 9th grades.  “Yikes” was our first response.  Because of the late approval the high school classes did not begin until Monday February 28.  There were 15 enrolled for 7th grade, 12 for 8th grade, and 12 for 9th grade bringing total enrollment at Oasis de Esperanza Managua to 452 students!  It’s a far cry from six years ago when we began school with 80 frightened children and 4 teachers in a 3-walled building with dirt floor.  God is good.

Boys at School

For the next ten months our students will receive a free Christian-based education, the younger children will receive two nutritious meals/day while the older receive a nutritious lunch, and will learn in a safe environment with an opportunity to be kids for 4-5 hours/day.  They will learn basic education curriculum and will learn that there is a God who loves them very much and desires a relationship with them.  They will recite Scripture and know praise and worship songs, each day will begin with a group devotion and a chapter from Proverbs.  They will also learn that while they may not seem to matter much in their current culture they are highly valued in the Kingdom of God.  They will be continuously validated from the moment they enter the gate until they leave at the end of the school day.  There will be no doubt in their minds where they stand with God!!

It’s an exciting time in the lives of these children, an exciting time for teachers and staff, and equally exciting for Savior’s Tear.  We look forward to sharing the moments with you during the year.  Thank you for your prayers as we work to provide “hope and a future” to these precious children.

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