Habele is sponsoring 21 students across Micronesia this school year, providing them with tuition assistance to attend prestigious private schools.
The scholarships are designed to increase access to quality classroom instruction and raise community expectations for all types of schooling. A Habele director explained it this way to the Saipan Tribune:
“Every child from every island deserves access to an effective and appropriate classroom,” explains Alex Sidles, a Habele board member. Sidles observed that scholarships for low-income and isolated students also had a broader impact. “We are working to change attitudes and expectations… when parents see that students from their community can excel academically they come to expect –even demand– more from all types schools.”One of the 2010-11 scholarships winners is Virginia, a native of Satawal who attends school on the Island of Pohnpei (Micronesia's national capital). She is enrolled in the widely respected SDA school located in the city of Kolonia.
She recently wrote to Habele board President Neil Mellen expressing her gratitude to Habele donors and excitement about the forthcoming school year.
Virginia is one of three students studying in Pohnpei with Habele scholarships. The other two, Glimmer and Nick, attend the Pohnpei Catholic Elementary school.
The average private school tuition fee in Micronesia is less than $500, or roughly half of the per-student spending in the public schools.
Learn more about the need for, and impact of, privately funded scholarships for Micronesian students at www.habele.org.