Thursday, December 7, 2023

Many schools are still waiting for repairs nearly a year after earthquakes

Almost 2,000 schools that were damaged in last September’s two major earthquakes are still waiting for repairs, according to a collective of citizens’ organizations.

Statistics based on official government information and compiled on the website show that damage at 1,786 schools in nine states hasn’t been attended to.

The newspaper El Universal reported today that the schools haven’t received funds from state or federal governments, insurance companies or the private sector that would allow the repair work to be completed.

More than half a million students attend the affected schools, which range from preschools to adult education facilities.

With the start of the 2018/2019 school year just a month away, it is likely that many of the students will be forced to make alternative arrangements for their education.

While the situation is far from ideal, statistics show that just six weeks ago it was far worse.

According to the last public update provided by the federal Secretariat of Education (SEP) on June 4, there were 4,657 schools that hadn’t received funds to carry out repairs.

El Universal said it didn’t receive a response from the SEP to its request for current figures.

The 1,786 still-damaged schools are located in México state, Oaxaca, Chiapas, Puebla, Mexico City, Hidalgo, Michoacán, Morelos and Tlaxcala. Eight of them sustained severe damage.

México state has the highest number of schools still awaiting repair, with 897, followed by Oaxaca, with 442, Chiapas, with 207 and Mexico City with 151.

In two states — Hidalgo and Puebla — there is only a single school that hasn’t been attended to but in the latter case, the damage is severe.

The first of the twin earthquakes struck on September 7 and primarily affected southern Mexico while the second quake that hit on September 19 caused widespread damage in the center of the country.

Almost 500 people lost their lives in the two disasters, thousands were injured and countless more were left homeless after their houses collapsed.

Source: El Universal (sp)

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