Saturday, April 7, 2012

School drop-outs and Windows XP

The educational system in Vanuatu is different than the system in the USA.  Parents must pay school fees from their own limited financial resources.  Our partners, Peter and Jenny Isaac, have all three of their boys in school now and are paying about $650 in school fees, not counting uniforms, textbooks, and transportation for each of their boys.  For people who do not have much money, this is a huge effort and is often helped by relatives.  But, there are many children who never get a chance to go to school because their parents don't have the money.

Another difference in the educational system here is that students are required to take big exams at the end of the year that test all that the student was supposed to have learned throughout the year.  If the student doesn't do well on the test, his family may decide that it isn't worth the money to continue paying for his/her school fees and the student drops out.

A young lady in our Black Sand Church took her 9th grade end-of-year exams last year and did not pass.  Her parents are also paying school fees for her younger sister and younger brother, and there is one more little brother who will be starting school soon.  So, Roline was told that she would no longer be going to school.

Commonly, these young ladies will end-up becoming young mothers within a year or so.  After praying and discussing with Roline's parents, we offered to have her come to our house once a week to learn some basic office skills and housekeeping.  Sylvia spends an hour discipling and mentoring Roline, before moving on to more technical training.  Roline has learned to use the comb binder machine and helped to create the textbooks for David's latest class, as well as, other books.

We would like to help Roline (and perhaps other young people) have the opportunity to learn some basic computer skills and keyboarding.  We have an older desktop computer that needs a Windows operating system.  When we purchased the computer here in Vanuatu, we were not aware that the Windows XP program that was installed was not authentic.  If you have used Windows 98 or Windows XP on your home computer (and are no longer using that program) and have the installation CD's as well as the product key code, please drop us an e-mail!  We would be glad to put them to use!

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