Escuelita Puente (Puente School), founded in 2014, is a social justice education program for youth community members from kindergarten through young youth. Puente program staff work to develop signature Puente curricula for kindergarten/elementary school, middle school, and high school students as an annual summer school program.
Escuelita Puente’s curriculum focuses on three main components: sustainability, culture, and justice. Student youth experience community gardening and learn about ancestral plants and farming, take field trips to art museums and community murals, engage in cultural art making projects, and learn about key human rights issues facing people in the state of Arizona including migrant justice and Indigenous Peoples’ rights. Through Escuelita Puente, Chicano youth are given an opportunity to learn about cultures, histories, and identities that are often excluded from public school curricula.
Students at Escuelita Puente are led by frontline organizers and activists in the human rights and social justice movement. Youth learn how to defend themselves and their communities from deportations, threats of incarceration, and ICE/police joint tactics. Through hands-on justice-based learning, youth are empowered to fight against systems of oppression and lead the way towards change.
In 2020, Escuelita Puente expanded to include an internship program for high school, community college, university, and graduate students. Internships run on a semester-basis in the Spring, Summer, and Fall, and are an opportunity for students to experience Puente from the inside while giving back to their communities. Interning at Puente equips students with the skills and tools necessary for frontline organizing.
To apply to be an intern, please email us with your resume and cover letter specific to Puente Movement for Human Rights.