What would you do for education? In 2011, WISE – World Innovation Summit for Education – produced a documentary on the children of Los Pinos, Colombia. Los Pinos’ school was closed due to a lack of funding, leaving students with two options to get to the next nearest school. These young children could either walk two hours both ways, or ride a zip line across a deep canyon to get to school. When WISE made their documentary, the Colombian government had been promising for six years to install a cable car for the students. Sadly, even in the face of accidents on the zip line, the residents were still waiting when cameras started to roll. So what happened next?
In 2014, WISE returned to Los Pinos to check on the status of the students. They found no progress made towards building a cable car, and some families had eventually moved away to be nearer to the school. Sadly, moving wasn’t an option for other families, and the zip line remained their children’s only means of receiving an education. There is a bright side to this story. Los Pinos’ school was reopened on 19 February 2015, allowing these children to get an education without needing to make a dangerous journey every day. The next time your kid complains about having to get up early for school, tell them the story of the children of Los Pinos. You can watch WISE’s second documentary on these zip lining children below.