29 de mayo de 2024

Radio 26 – Matanzas, Cuba

Emisora provincial de Matanzas, Cuba, La Radio de tu Corazón

64 years after the altruistic gesture of volunteer teachers .

Today’s challenges are in search of a higher quality education, with teachers and professors who feel what they do and transmit knowledge from the heart, better prepared, as demanded by the current times.

Today, May 3rd marks the 64th anniversary of the arrival in the Sierra Maestra of that first contingent of courageous teenagers whom the historic leader of the Cuban Revolution summoned to prepare themselves as teachers and thus take teaching to the most remote places of the country. In his memorable call, Fidel asked for one thousand young people and four thousand were presented to him in an altruistic gesture in response to the demands of the homeland.

By 1960 it was clear that despite the efforts and the Comprehensive Education Reform carried out by the nascent Revolution, not all the needs were being met and especially in the most remote areas of the island it was essential to eradicate illiteracy and bring to the classroom thousands of children between 6 and 14 years old who had never attended school.

There was an enthusiastic and massive response from those boys and girls from towns and cities who, unafraid of the harshness of rural life, took the step forward and in just a few months were trained as volunteer teachers in camps set up in the mountains. This legion of novice educators was also joined by hundreds of recent graduates and students of the last year of the Normal Schools who completed the course in the Sierra Maestra itself.

Barely six months had passed since the departure of the first group and the country had two thousand 500 new teachers ready and willing to teach in the fields and remote places of Cuba.

Today, when many of them are gray-haired and others are no longer physically present, we recognize how they managed to overcome the obstacles and fulfill the mission entrusted to them, to teach reading and writing to the peasants and their families.

It is instructive for today’s times to remember this epic, which preceded the historic National Literacy Campaign and was the basis of the Educational Revolution that decades later would be forged.

The level of schooling that Cuba exhibits today and its achievements in science and cultural life are undeniable results of those founding times.

Today’s challenges are in search of a higher quality education, with teachers and professors who feel what they do and transmit knowledge from the heart, better prepared, as demanded by the current times.

Written by Yovana Baró Álvarez.

 

 

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