School Restart in Los Cabos: Challenges for our students

Dear Friends of Liga MAC,

As September approaches, a hot topic in most jurisdictions has been the re-introduction of students to some kind of modified education model. 

In June, the Baja California Sur ministry of education announced a staggered return to the classroom starting in August, 2020. That plan has been revised. Students will not return to the classroom until the state has received its “green zone” designation. Instead classes ranging from kindergarten to grade 9 will be broadcast via national public television 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, starting August 24. 

In September, high school content will be handled locally when students resume classes remotely.  A snowball effect has further complicated an already stressed education system. With so many businesses still closed resulting in a chaotic economy, families who formerly could afford to send their children to private school can no longer. The affect has been the closure of some private schools and more students being added to the public school system.

Precipitating the school start restructuring, is a dramatic rise in the number of COVID cases. Although the state has increased COVID testing and the ratio of deaths to positive tests is relatively low, in-hospital COVID care has increased to 60% of capacity. 
On a more personal level, whereas none of Liga MAC’s families had previously been directly affected by the virus, regrettably at least 3 parents of Liga MAC students have tested positive with one parent requiring hospitalization. Private family parties are to blame for some of the new outbreaks. 
And as COVID cases multiply, employment stagnates. The local construction workforce has seen projects restarted only to terminate under onerous and expensive COVID protocols. With the lack of tourists and a local economy in tatters, many restaurants are closing leaving restaurant workers struggling to provide for their families.
For Liga MAC students receiving educational support, news that school would become virtual was not good news. In a recent telephone survey of Liga MAC families, our staff discovered that only 44% of students have access to home computers and about half have access to dedicated internet. 
High school students will be required to submit their assignments via the internet. Having the means to access lessons, complete assignments and submit them via the internet will now be critical for our students.
As a result of this situation, we are announcing a new campaign:
The Liga MAC Laptop Drive
Donate your old laptop – Are you about to replace your laptop? Please consider donating the old one to Liga MAC for our students. Or,
Donate cash for the purchase of a new laptop – for $250 USD (approximately), Liga MAC can purchase a new laptop for our students. Or,
Pay for a family’s internet service for one month – for approximately $18 USD or 400 pesos provide internet service for one month.

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