Bringing educational opportunity to those in need

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Mobile classroom
By Michelle Robertson
With the aim of ensuring that no one misses out on getting an education, a project in San Francisco (US) brings a classroom to the people who need it the most - both kids and adults. The ‘Self-Determination Project Bus’ is a mobile learning centre that was launched by a local school. It travels through some of the poorest neighborhoods of the San Francisco area, offering its facilities to disadvantaged residents - particularly single parents, students who don’t have access to transportation, and youngsters who are afraid to cross gang territories. The refurbished bus is fully fitted with everything you could possibly need in terms of resources, equipment and supplies. It features a library, computers, internet access, desks, study nooks and teachers.

The school is available to all students for free, so anyone in the area can start learning as soon as they sign up. Over 5,000 people are already using this amazing mobile classroom.  Emerald Montes, a 17-year-old who grew up surrounded by gang violence, said: “When I was 14 and 15 I couldn’t go to school. I was around so much bad stuff, it prevented me from going. This is different; it is more flexible and I can blend it in with my job and my busy life. Rena Ortiz, who achieved a degree using the mobile school, summed up the beauty of the project: “I feel as if this bus is going to change so much. Being able to walk out of your house and see a bus that’s full of education - that is hope on wheels.”


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