The Dream School
Over the past fifteen years, the education system of Afghanistan, once devastated by civil war and extremist policies, has been restored. Schools were built and re-built. Girls were invited back. Public education began once again in earnest and "Dream Afghanistan" is filling in some of the education gaps still present.
Afghanistan has experienced remarkable growth and changes in recent years, however there remain deep-rooted obstacles. A shortage of teachers results in classroom sizes that often exceed fifty students in a small room. Corrupt practices can sometimes mean that bribery is more important than performance. And teacher absenteeism often exceeds that of the students. In the midst of this, private schools have filled an important gap in education. They offer the highest quality education available for communities desperate for education.
For the past seven years, Dream Afghanistan, a private school in a remote town of Afghanistan, has been trying to address this need. The school was founded by a partnership between a concerned American and an Afghan passionate for education and the good of his community. With the help of international donors, the school has grown from 120 students to 600 at one point. Current enrollment is at 550 students with more anticipated for the 2018-19 school year.
Many of these students come from families able to pay the $15 per month for tuition. But, for families who live on $100 to $200 a month, private school can seem outside the realm of possibility, even at just $15 per month. They see good education as beyond their reach. So for the past five years, sponsors from the US and Europe have provided 50% tuition scholarships so that low-income families can also send their children to the school. In 2017-18, these sponsors provided 97 scholarships. In 2018-19, we aim to continue these 97 scholarships along with 53 new students.
Community members repeatedly comment that students at the school are far more advanced in their subjects than those at other schools. Also, scholarships ensure quality education for lower-income families as well as a healthy, integrated learning environment for all of the students.
At Dream Afghanistan, teachers actually come to class (compared to the prevalent absenteeism elsewhere) and they apply the best educational methods available in the community. The project aims to provide a sustainable model of development, and though it was started with international aid, the school now runs 80-90% off of its own revenues. The school vision is owned and initiated by the director and the community.
The school is now not only filling an education gap for the general public, but is also improving the generational outcomes of low-income families. Scholarship recipients are often the families of blue-collar workers or of teachers. They are hard-working families looking for opportunities for their children in a competitive world. Each year the director and other administrators of the school receive applications for the scholarships, then a person outside of the school community, in partnership with MRDS, interviews the students and cnfirms legitimacy and eligibility.
How You Can Help
In partnership with the community and the director, we want to ensure the school isn’t only for the rich and influential and continues to provide educational opportunity for girls as well. Approximately $7 per month or $84 per year, provides a half-tuition scholarship for students. The students’ families express their own commitment to their future by covering the other half of tuition, the costs of books, and uniforms themselves. In turn, they receive the best education available in their community.
* Note: On-going security concerns in-country prevent us from providing individual student profiles at the school. Therefore, this is not direct student sponsorship, but rather an opportunity to contribute to the scholarship fund. The project director will provide donors with regular updates about the school and is always available to respond to questions about the students and the school program.
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Call Us At +1 713.961.5645
Monday - Friday, 9am-5pm Central Standard Time
5233 Bellaire Blvd
Bellaire, TX 77401