Sara Zampierin

Sara Zampierin (Supporting Kids in Peru - SKIP): Sara was born and raised in California. She graduated from Rice University in Houston, Texas, with a bachelor's degree in mathematical economic analysis, policy studies and managerial studies. During her undergraduate studies, Sara worked with a mentoring program for at-risk elementary students. She also worked with the Center for Capital Assistance, a nonprofit organization that conducts mitigation investigations and assists attorneys who represent people on Death Row. After her fellowship, Sara wrote: "I understand now how much a community-based organization can do with such a close, personal relationship with its members, and with just a little support from organizations like AP they can really spread their message."

Huelga indefinida

04 Jul

I wouldn’t normally update my blog so soon, but I find myself with unexpected free time since school was canceled for today, tomorrow, and indefinitely beyond that…

The teachers union has declared a “Huelga Indefinida”, an indefinite strike to protest a law that would require all teachers to pass examinations. The current teachers who failed the basic skills test three times would also be fired. One of the union leaders was quoted as saying, “It’s like telling a student that doesn’t pass exams, just go home.” Right, the only difference is that children depend on these teachers to teach the material on these exams, not just learn it… which would give a better explanation for students currently failing tests as well.

The subdirector at the colegio (vice principal by American school structure) told us the news this morning, and said it could be a few months or more if they could not come to an agreement with the legislature. When we remarked, “The poor students”, his concern was seemed minimal, and he said maybe they would make the days up in January, during their summer break.

At the same time, in reading news articles and blogs on the topic, it seems that the teachers are trying to stop passage of this law at least partially because they want to include a larger budget for education and teacher training for every teacher. Both of these things are necessities for Peru to improve their education, and they are correct in that the government isn’t doing this on their own. It seems that both sides are fighting each other, but which side really is fighting with the best interests of the children and their education in mind?

In light of the strike, we will be meeting with SKIP staff and volunteers to discuss how SKIP will react, including possible extra classes or different activities for the children. Also, we need to discuss how we will use this strike, the newest attack on education for the children of Peru, to go forward with the advocacy project.

Meanwhile, I thought I’d post a report done on SKIP by news here. Even if you don’t understand Spanish, you can see some of the SKIP children, families, and volunteers in action!


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Posted By Sara Zampierin

Posted Jul 4th, 2007


  • Marilu

    July 7, 2007


    Unfortunately education has always been the last item to be considered by every government. In addition to fiscal limitations other factors contribute to the problem: creation of many inadequate teachers´college that graduate people as sausages, extremely low pay for teachers, lack of incentive for training and development. I believe this is the first serious effort any government is making to improve this, but they have a powerful adversary in the union which is strongly influenced by leftists. I believe that if SKIP is able to set up its own school, they will be able to set a model. When I get back to US I will get info on a school project already in Peru that has already received worldwide recognition, they are run as private school but teachers are paid by the government. Other way of helping children is to provide them with books and all school needs directly to them because unfortunately there is to much corruption and when they receive monies they do not account for it. You are making a difference by just being there and as you can see with minimal effort you can get some local support. Keep up the good work and thank you on behalf of concerned Peruvians.

  • Amy Burrows

    July 10, 2007


    Sara- GREAT blog! Full of information, opinions, reactions, facts, and real-life stuff! Awesome… keep er’ up! 🙂
    – Amy

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