Just the Facts....
Status: Complete

School: Las Parcelas Primary School

Country: Nicaragua

Community: Las Parcelas

Donor: Matching Donor

Partner: BuildOn

Year: 2012

Grades: pre-K through 6

Students: 205

Las Parcelas Primary School Completed on November 27, 2012!

The New School in Las Parcelas

The Community

Las Parcelas is 290 kilometers north of Managua, the capital of Nicaragua, and 140 km from the buildOn office in Estelí. There are approximately 100 families- about 1200 people- living in the community. The majority are Catholic or Evangelical. The people of Las Parcelas are primarily farmers who grow beans, corn, coffee and bananas as their staple crops. Las Parcelas is located in the mountains of the department of Jinotega. The Coco River runs very close to the community, forming the border between two regions- Pantasma and Quilali. The small town of Quilali is just a few kilometers from Las Parcelas. Most homes in Las Parcelas have electricity, and there is ample access to water.
This community was founded in 1965.

Formal education has been available in Las Parcelas since 1980. There are currently 414 students enrolled in school in Las Parcelas- 51 (20 girls, 31 boys) in preschool, 154 (84 girls, 70 boys) in primary school and 209 students in high school. They study with 12 teachers, 4 of whom travel from outside the community to teach there.

Prior to this project there were 4 Ministry of Education classrooms in Las Parcelas overflowing with children; the remainder of the students studied in open areas called “ramadas” with no walls and thin plastic or metal roofs. During the long annual rainy season (June-October) these structures provide little protection for young learners, and even less motivation for them to stay in school. Las Parcelas was selected for a buildOn project because of its high enrollment numbers and lack of infrastructure.

The Old School or "Ramadas"

Another Ramadas

The Project

The buildOn school block in Las Parcelas has two classrooms and two latrines. It has a poured concrete floor, cinderblock walls with rebar reinforcements, and a corrugated metal roof. Students began using the new school in February 2013 when the new school year began. Because of buildOn’s support in the community of Las Parcelas, the Ministry of Education has decided to match the buildOn classrooms constructed and build 2 additional classrooms in the community. This means that Las Parcelas now only needs 2 more classrooms in order to have enough space for all of its students.

The Las Parcelas school project broke ground on October 17th 2012 and was completed on November 27th 2012. The people of Las Parcelas contributed a total of 530 volunteer workdays to the project, which finished ahead of schedule due to the higher than average number of volunteers on the worksite each day. Before beginning construction community members also collected local materials for the project and met with buildOn staff to sign a covenant outlining the following responsibilities:

Community Contribution
• Unskilled labor: 12 workers (6 women and 6 men) per day, six days per week
• Commitment to educating boys and girls equally
• The land on which the school is built
• High quality local materials: sand, gravel, water & rocks
• Volunteer management committee made up of 12 villagers (six women, six men)
• Lodging for buildOn Field Coordinator and skilled laborers in local homes
• Basic construction tools (shovels, picks, wheelbarrows, buckets, etc.) when available

Opportunity For All and buildOn Contribution
• Engineering and architecture
• Construction materials (excluding local materials) for school and latrine
• Skilled labor and plans needed to build the school
• Project management (buildOn coordinators)
• Instruction in basic construction techniques