When the world gets closer.

We help you see farther.

Sign up to our expressly international daily newsletter.

Already a subscriber? Log in .

You've reached your limit of one free article.

Get unlimited access to Worldcrunch

You can cancel anytime .


Exclusive International news coverage

Ad-free experience NEW

Weekly digital Magazine NEW

9 daily & weekly Newsletters

Access to Worldcrunch archives

Free trial

30-days free access, then $2.90
per month.

Annual Access BEST VALUE

$19.90 per year, save $14.90 compared to monthly billing.save $14.90.

Subscribe to Worldcrunch

Brazilian University Students Forced Back Into Kindergarten

Space is so tight at one Brazilian university that some classes are now being held at a nearby kindergarten. The adult students have started to protest, saying it’s hard to concentrate amid the din of shrieking five-year-olds.

The School of Arts, Sciences & Humanities of the São Paulo University(gaf.arq)
The School of Arts, Sciences & Humanities of the São Paulo University(gaf.arq)
Vaness Correa

SAO PAULO – As bad as conditions are on the Guarulhos campus of the Federal University of São Paulo (Unifesp), with its sweltering classrooms and improvised cafeteria, they're even worse at the kindergarten next door, where some of the university's approximately 3,000 students are now having to take classes.

The overcrowded Unifesp has been promising to construct a new building since 2007. So far, nothing's been built, forcing the overcrowded university – much to the chagrin of its students – to begin using the classrooms of a nearby kindergarten.

"We are discussing Hegel while outside the classroom there are children goofing around during their break. We can't bear these classes anymore," says university student Michael de Santana, 27.

Guarulhos, where São Paulo's international airport is located, has about 1,300,000 residents.

Demanding better conditions, Unifesp students from the Guarulhos campus began protesting about two months ago. Last Friday they occupied the Academic Division. Now students at several others federal universities—which are maintained by the national government and are cost-free for students— are threatening similar actions.

Students in Guarulhos say the on-campus classes are uncomfortable too. "In summer it gets extremely hot and there is no ventilation," says De Santana. Others complain that in order to make photocopies, they must wait in line for 40 minutes. The tiny cafeteria – which is housed in a wooden shed – is also a source of frustration.

The school's academic director, Marcos Cezar de Freitas, insists the kindergarten "solution" will only be temporary. He says the long-promised new building will be moving forward now that the construction bidding process has finally been settled.

Read more from Folha de S. Paulo

Photo - gaf.arq

You've reached your limit of free articles.

To read the full story, start your free trial today.

Get unlimited access. Cancel anytime.

Exclusive coverage from the world's top sources, in English for the first time.

Insights from the widest range of perspectives, languages and countries.

Migrant Lives

They Migrated From Chiapas When Opportunities Dried Up, Orchids Brought Them Home

An orchid rehabilitation project is turning a small Mexican community into a tourist magnet — and attracting far-flung locals back to their hometown.

They Migrated From Chiapas When Opportunities Dried Up, Orchids Brought Them Home

Marcos Aguilar Pérez takes care of orchids rescued from the rainforest in his backyard in Santa Rita Las Flores, Mapastepec, Chiapas, Mexico.

Adriana Alcázar González/GPJ Mexico
Adriana Alcázar González

MAPASTEPEC — Sweat cascades down Candelaria Salas Gómez’s forehead as she separates the bulbs of one of the orchids she and the other members of the Santa Rita Las Flores Community Ecotourism group have rescued from the rainforest. The group houses and protects over 1,000 orchids recovered from El Triunfo Biosphere Reserve, in the southeastern Mexican state of Chiapas, after powerful storms.

“When the storms and heavy rains end, we climb to the vicinity of the mountains and collect the orchids that have fallen from the trees. We bring them to Santa Rita, care for them, and build their strength to reintegrate them into the reserve later,” says Salas Gómez, 32, as she attaches an orchid to a clay base to help it recover.

Like magnets, the orchids of Santa Rita have exerted a pull on those who have migrated from the area due to lack of opportunity. After years away from home, Salas Gómez was one of those who returned, attracted by the community venture to rescue these flowers and exhibit them as a tourist attraction, which provides residents with an adequate income.

Keep reading...Show less

The latest