Within a sprawling campus of carefully manicured athletic fields and freshly painted brick classroom buildings, the YPMM school facilities rival those of private institutions in exclusive urban communities. Yet, this is a public school in one of the remote areas in Sumatra.
“The foundation was established to make sure that the children in the village receive a proper education even though they live in a remote area,” said Abdul Kadir, who heads the foundation.
About 2,500 students attend foundation schools and, while most kindergarten, elementary and junior high school students are children of employees from the nearby Lontar Papyrus paper mill, about half of the high school kids come from surrounding villages.
Since opening in 1997, the school has seen steady increases in faculty size, student enrollment and athletic accomplishment, according to their principals.
“We started with only two teachers, and now we have 15,” said kindergarten Principal Siti Khodijah. The Foundation, with support from the Lontar Papyrus paper mill, has increased its annual commitment to the school with scholarships, books, school supplies and honoraria for teachers. The investment has paid off.