The mayor of Cali, Jorge Iván Ospina, has put into reality something that seems like a dream to many of the poor; the creation of an education citadel covering a space as large as 26.710 square meters in Aguablanca, specifically for the poorest children of the city.
If all goes well, this can provide the best quality of education that Cali has to offer once inaugurated in 2011.
The administration, with its participative and inclusive approach located the project right in the middle of the three complicated areas communities 13, 14 and 15, planning a total construction of 16.478 square meteres, of which 5.500 are for public space, 3.165 for a public library and auditorium and 8.927 for the school itself with place for 2.880 primary and secondary pupils at two schedules (morning and afternoon), 300 places for infants and 488 for upper secondary education.
This is the first time that construction workers from Aguablanca itself work with their own hands to build a school for their children. This sole fact might be crucial for a stronger involvement by the parents of this school's future children. As long as accountability from the school to the parents is working, this massive state school might actually be able to initiate a new era in the education story of Cali and Colombia.
Much remains to be seen once the actual teaching starts and time has had it's fair share to put the project on test. No matter the future results, this gives rise to an inspiring present, which I'll follow as closely as possible.