Partners in Education Roatan

              working with our communities to improve education in the Bay Islands

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Bay Islands Demographics

  • Age: 50% under 18 years of age; 30% elderly; 20% working age
  • Government: Democracy
  • Religion: Protestant
  • Economy: Tourism, Construction, Fishing
  • Literacy Rate: 49% - 69% (reports vary)
  • Mandatory Education: pre-school to 9th grade
  • Schools:  Community-based.  Vary size from 2-room schools for 50 children to larger schools for 2,500 students.  Two high schools.  Several university programs now available on-line or on the island.
  • All classes are required to be bilingual.  However, there is little funding for English-language teachers and the majority of classroom teachers speak Spanish. Textbooks are in Spanish.  The Roatan Rotary Club is sponsoring English in Latin America, a program that is recorded and teachers with the classroom teacher. 
  • Schools have limited supplies including books, instructional materials, desks & chairs

In 1990 Roatan was a sleepy little island off the north coast of Honduras that attracted divers and snorkelers looking for a laidback vacation. About 15,000 people lived permanently on the island. Their primary language was English. The economy was based on fishing and cottage industries. There were no paved roads; the island electric company was getting started; and telephones were a novelty.

 Today..... the world has discovered Roatan. Over 150,000 people live on the island; an estimated 85% are Spanish-speakers.  Electricity, paved roads, cell phones, and internet are now standard. Tourism has replaced fishing as the primary economy.  Over 2 million cruise ship guests come to the island annually. Thousands of divers and snorkelers stay at upscale hotels, resorts, hostels, and condos. Retirees flock to top-notch gated communities or off-the-grid island homes.