Most students in southern Honduras end their education at 6th grade. The reasons they don't continue to the next level of education is purely ECONOMIC. The families cannot afford to purchase school uniforms; pay for transportation, school lunches, and school supplies. Scholarships provide these things to approximately 125-150 students every year, so they can continue their education past the 6th grade and graduate high school!
Up until a few years ago, the educational system in Honduras only required that students attend school until the 6th grade. Slowly, Honduras is starting to encourage students to stay in school until 9th grade (or even until 12th grade). But, MANY students end their studies after 6th grade. While families do not need to pay to have their students in school, there are many costs associated with a student attending school: uniforms; supplies; transportation; and school lunch.
Directors in 5 Junior High Schools are asked to identify students who are highly motivated and academically strong, but might drop out of school. There is no shortage of capable, motivated students who just need some financial support to further their education. These students are supported from 7th grade, until they end their studies. The sad reality is that most of the children whose education ends at 6th grade wind up working in the fields or as maids by age 12.
A country whose students only attend school until the 6th grade is not going to develop and become economically self-sufficient. Every year of education provides students the opportunity to learn and develop skills, giving them a better chance to advance in society. Our scholarship students now hold important jobs such as registered nurses, lawyers, health promoters, computer engineering, agriculture, etc. Honduras needs an educated population, if it is going to grow and prosper.