Commitments Continue Despite Pandemic

Date posted: Sunday 05 July 2020

As an educator in the public schools, I have to admit that I was relieved when the 2019-2020 school year ended. After nearly three months of distance learning, I was ready for a break. Even as I reset after a trying school year, I am aware that our brothers and sisters in Guatemala continue to face the challenges that COVID-19 brings to their education system. Their school year runs from January to October, with a mid-semester break in June. Schools have been closed since March 16 and will continue to be closed at least until August.


Beatriz Castillo, ILAG’s Education Coordinator, and I connected through a video call on June 8. She shared some updates regarding schooling during the pandemic. Due to the quarantine restrictions, the Colegio Luterano Agustino de Guatemala (CLAG) continues to carry out its instruction via distance learning. Students in first grade and up are doing their learning online. On the CLAG Facebook page there are frequent posts of children showing what they are learning, creating, and doing at home – multiplication tables, art projects, cooking lessons, physical education activities, mindfulness tasks, just to name a few. Each week the pre-primary teachers meet with parents to hand out packets for the youngest learners and to receive completed homework. This materials exchange is now being done at the new school property.


On the topic of the new school, all of the items from the old building have been moved to the new one. We join with ILAG in praying that the school will be ready for students when the government says that schools can re-open. Carlos, the contractor, keeps working on the new building. He is repairing and sanitizing the underground water tank and making progress on the electrical work. The rains that came with tropical storm Amanda made it evident that there is some work to be done to keep water out of the building. The repairs are being completed even with the challenges of the quarantine and limited transportation in the area.


While the response to the pandemic has forced all of us to do things differently, some things have remained the same—the ILAG’s commitment to education and our commitment to walk with ILAG in all of their ministries.


“And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” Colossians 3:17


—Deanine Mann, Guatemala Committee Member
Our Savior's, Circle Pines