Subsequent to a long history of Authoritarian Regimes, the Dominican Republic is entering a fresh era of democracy and social participation; however it is still lacking way behind when it comes to providing proper education for its children. United Nations Development Program (UNDP) in its finding says, “Dominican Republic lags in its goals to improve the education and health sectors, as well as in reaching more fairness in the population and lower poverty.”
The Dominican Republic has the lowest investment in education in Latin America and the Caribbean with only 1.9 percent of its GDP invested in public education. We all identify that education is indispensable to a country’s growth also because children are the future of a nation, hence it is very much crucial that proper education should be imparted to children for the all round development of a society. But, Dominican children lack the resources needed for a proper education. Sufficient funds are not invested in school supplies and infrastructure. Without sufficient funds, there is also lack of extracurricular activities in the school curriculum. Transportation to and from schools and teacher/parent training are not given due importance, for the reason that there is of lack of funds. Owing to these problems, fewer students are enrolling themselves in the school; there is a decrease in attendance level and graduation rates, and increase in the drop out level among the students.
According to Save the Children Organization, an estimated 40 percent of the population is under 15 years old but because of lack of resources, a lot of children are not able to educate themselves even if they want to. Only 50 percent of those children that enroll in primary education complete the first four years, 22 percent finish the full eight-year program of primary education, and 10 percent finish the High School. In addition to this, there is also lack of proper clothing and sufficient finances. And even if a few children do attend school, they are forced to drop out of school at an early age to support their family monetarily. The end result is that, as these people are not suitably educated, they are forced to take very low paying dreary jobs. This cycle continues to the next generation and to the next.
As has been said by G.K. Chesterson, “Education is simply the soul of a society as it passes from one generation to another”, but when the soul itself is missing from the Dominican Republic how is the society going to survive??