Haitian Children Return to School after Quake

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Children in Haiti returned to school Monday for the first time since a 7.0 magnitude earthquake devastated the island nation in January.

"Today is the day school resumes, after a very, very difficult period of time for parents," said the director of one school where classes were taking place in tents.

The quake destroyed more than 80 percent of school buildings in the capital city of Port-au-Prince. 

Even as Haiti struggles to rebuild, schools and other educational institutions are seeking provide the nation's children with a sense of stability.

"We know that in any emergency, children are always the most vulnerable," Gary Shaye, country director for Save the Children in Haiti, told ReliefWeb

"Providing them with a normal routine, a safe environment and opportunities to access a quality education are critical to helping children heal and move forward from what is still a massive catastrophe."
The Inter-American Development Bank has promised to raise $500 million to improve the entire Haitian school system. 

Former President Bill Clinton, co-chairman Interim Haiti Recovery Commission, is trying to ensure donors honor their pledges.   

"We want every child in Haiti to be able to go to school and get a good education for the first time ever, and get a meal in school," Clinton said in August.

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