AMERICA/PERU - School conditions for poor Ashaninkas children

Friday, 4 July 2014

Pangoa (Agenzia Fides) – They sit on the floor, on carpets and some on small wooden boards used as seats: this is how 137 Ashaninkas pupils of the Unión Alto Sanibeni native community, Pangoa district, province of Satipo (Junín) attend lessons. They do not have classrooms and study in the municipal center without basic services. This is what emerged in a recent visit by some experts in Pangoa. Only one of the children, a 4-year-old, uses a makeshift mat made by his father with branches and straw. In a nursery school for children between 3 and 5 years of age a bilingual teacher works with 27 students and tries to do everything possible for their education. Close to this school there is another bilingual teacher, where carpets, chairs, notebooks, pencils and a room with basic services are needed. There is another teacher who takes care of 50 children in their first and second grade. In the same school there is a teacher who has 38 children in their third and fourth grade. The only male teacher takes care of 22 children who attend the fifth and sixth grade. In addition to school material and logistical needs at least three more teachers are needed. The Unión Alto Sanibeni community does not have basic services and this favors the proliferation of infectious diseases among children. Qali Warma National school nutrition programme does not follow these young children, although the community is only 2 hours from Pangoa. The Ashaninkas almost all live in Peru, and other small groups are allocated in the Brazilian state of Acre on the border with the Country. (AP) (Agenzia Fides 04/07/2014)