MEF is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. All contributions are U.S. tax-deductible.
 
DONATE BY MAIL OR PHONE:
If you prefer to donate by mail, please make check payable to Maya Educational Foundation and send to:
 
Maya Educational Foundation
P.O. Box 1483
Wellfleet, MA 02667, USA 
 
Or call us at:
 
Tel. (508) 349-1330
 
The Maya Educational Foundation supports the educational and professional advancement of the Maya people and neighboring indigenous cultures in southern Mexico, Belize and Central America, and sustains programs that foster study, preservation and understanding of those cultures.

 

         
Colegio Bilingüe Intercultural "Paxil" 
 
The Colegio is an exceptional non-profit, middle school in Nebaj founded by teachers and parents to provide a modern education in both Ixil and Spanish that respects both Maya and ladino cultures. Of all the many private middle schools in the Ixil area, it is the only one with this principle at its core. While it follows the basic program outlined by the Ministry of Education, it supplements this in two ways: it provides up-to-date, technological skills and course work, and it seeks to keep the students rooted in and proud of all elements in their cultural heritage.  Maya ceremonies, rituals and holidays are celebrated along with the ones of the dominant culture, and traditional Maya skills and techniques are stressed along with computer and math skills.


Sabina Manuela, Paxil student, writing a letter to MEF.

In 2007, when MEF started giving support to Colegio Paxil, only about 50 students were enrolled, many of them unable to finance the entire cost of their education. Since then, MEF has provided supplemental funding along with books and computers for a tech center. The Daniele Agostino Derossi Foundation, on the basis of a visit sponsored by MEF, granted the Colegio funds for more books, musical instruments, looms and weaving materials, and special classes have been organized to take advantage of these gifts.
 
Over these past few years, the school has seen an impressive growth in student numbers, despite the existence of a tuition-free public middle school in town where local children could go instead. 
 
Parents and students in Nebaj appreciate that Colegio Paxil respects their customs and traditions and insists on the Ixil language being spoken, in addition to Spanish.
 
 
Santa María Nebaj (often called just Nebaj) is a municipality in the department of El Quiché in the Guatemalan highlands (1,900 m., 6,234 ft.). Along with the municipios of San Juan Cotzal and San Gaspar Chajul, it is the center of the Ixil speaking Mayas.
 
 
For 2016 Colegio Paxil's President, Xhun Guzmán, writes:
 
"The school year is underway and we have more than 125 students this year. It seems that the public has increasingly more confidence in our school."

 
What is “Paxil”?

Paxil, in the Ixil language, means “to spread, to reproduce,” and Paxil is the name of a sacred site located in the village of Xo’ik’uay, in Chajul, Quiché, where, according to oral tradition, the four colors of sacred corn were first discovered. Maya spiritual guides visit Paxil to ask for blessings during all phases of the agricultural cycle, planting, growing and harvest. It is a fitting name, then as well, for a school where learning is spread and reproduced. 
  

Maya Educational Foundation • P.O. Box 1483 • Wellfleet, MA 02667, USA
Tel. (508) 349-1330 • Fax (508) 349-0252 • mef@mayaedufound.org