We visited our last school this morning – the one we were scheduled to visit cancelled so Maristela scheduled a meeting with the Secretary if Education instead.
The Serra Dourada school is only 45 mins from Canarana and we got to use the paved highway (speed limit 80km/h) to a relatively more “urban” setting, more modern looking building and incorporating a student population of native Brazilians as well as city students. They are involved in the seed festival and reforestation but also are involved with erosion and recycling projects. Their focus was to look in their own community and see what needs to be done and do something to fix it. So far, they have successfully monitored & documented a huge erosion ditch on the main road and now the federal government will come in and repair it in the near future. Their slogan, per se, is to increase farm production but preserve the ecosystem as well. A fine balance needs to be achieved but they are well on the way to success.
The students here ranged in age from 14-17 and were far more outgoing than in the more rural schools. I got out my phrase book and we had a lively conversation about family, sports & music. One student even wore a NY Yankees cap (more for the skateboarding culture than for baseball allegiance – they are futbol fans).