Honduras President Xiomara Castro and Cuba’s Minister of Education Discuss ‘Yes I Can’ Literacy Program

The Minister of Education of Cuba, satisfied with her meeting with the Honduran president and other members of the Government. (PL)

14ymedio bigger14ymedio, Havana, 14 April 2023 — The President of Honduras, Xiomara Castro, received the Minister of Education of Cuba, Ena Elsa Velázquez, on Thursday, with whom she spoke about the “technical and scientific” support that the Island is providing to the Central American country to eradicate illiteracy through the program Yo sí puedo [Yes I Can].

“We are sure that hand in hand with Cuban advice, we are going to declare more than 100 municipalities in the country free of illiteracy this year,” said the Honduran Minister of Education, Daniel Sponda.

Sponda made these statements after the meeting with Velázquez, who traveled accompanied by the Island’s Vice Minister of Education, Eugenio González, and the representative of the Cuban educational mission, Clay Pérez.

Velázquez was satisfied with the exchange, which she described as “very fruitful,” like the one that the delegation also had with the president of Congress, Luis Redondo, and other ministers. “We are leaving with great satisfaction and the certainty that Cubans and Hondurans are going to give a joint response to the president’s efforts, programs that are leaders at this time,” she added.

In Honduras there are more than 30,000 educators who are receiving classes with the assistance of Cuban professionals in a new attempt to eradicate illiteracy, still very present in the country; in remote communities it reaches 90%. In many schools there are teachers who teach classes with as many as three and up to six grades, which does not guarantee a good education for the country’s children.

The return to Honduras of the Yo sí puedo program has revolutionized Honduran teachers and pedagogues who are upset about paying for services that could be carried out without any problem in the country.

The 123 Cuban teachers who will train teachers in Honduras will earn $406 a month, reported to the Honduran newspaper El Heraldo two weeks ago, in an article in which several analysts described the investment by one of the poorest countries on the continent as wrong.

Some specialists pointed out that the Cuban program was not badly structured, but it did not contain anything new and, above all, there had been very similar proposals made by Honduran educators.

The opposition, led by the National Party of Honduras (PNH), rejects the initiative, considering it “Cuban interference” through “shady agreements.”

“There are many demands from Latin American countries regarding the political and ideological presence of Cuba on the continent, which uses health and education as a pretext for its purposes,” they argued.


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