When a government introduces Internet-based distance learning as a result of the pandemic lockdown, thousands of students are excluded because of lack of Internet access In the villages of the high mountains of Bolivia, las Esculas de Cristo have initiated the teaching by the radio which reaches the most isolated populations of the department of Potosi.
With the arrival of the COVID 19 virus, the pandemic has highlighted the underlying problems in the educational field and exposed the great needs to continue with an educational process. Las Escuelas de Cristo (founded by Fray José Antonio Zampa in 1907 , who initiated the popular and rural education in Bolivia) analyzed alternatives to fulfill its educational purpose, the first option was the internet modality. But in our villages: lack connectivity, no adequate technological means and devices, and the local and family economy is very, very low.
Within this framework, in agreement with all the actors of the Institution, we decided to implement the distance education modality with the radio education project. The fundamental purpose : to restore the training process with pupils, guaranteeing the continuity of educational actions, thus consolidating the fundamental right to education even in times of pandemic. "Everyone has the right to education. [And this] shall aim at the full development of the human personality and the strengthening of respect for human rights [...]" (DHR 1948: Art. 27)
The founder started Las Eescuelas de Cristo for those who could not access education: no schools in their villages far away from the town, and needed to help their parents farming. Today as an institution we want to be faithful to our origins. It is the same reality, the most vulnerable in society are excluded from learning, because of their impossibility to contact their teachers via internet. We could not bear that injustice when only the richest can be educated.
That is why we have launched an educational prophetic voice, with the help of the technical team, directors, teachers who live their vocation with passion for education. As a sister of the Infant Jesus, I feel doubly called to continue motivating this educational project, because our Congregation of the Sisters of the Child Jesus was also born in this way.
Hna. Zulema L. Condori Llanos