“My family and I currently live in Alberta, Canada, but we are possibly interested in moving to Ecuador.
“We’re a young family. I’m in my early 30s, and we have three young sons. I would want to keep the property we own here (and citizenship) and buy another house in Ecuador.
“We would prefer to be outside of any large city. The town where we are currently in is 4,500 people. It is only 10 kilometers from where I work, which is a city of about 100,000 people.
“However, we would need to be close enough to schools for our sons. Any info you could provide us on school systems and options would be much appreciated.”
— Mike T., Canada
Latin America Editor Christian MacDonald replies:
“It’s not hard to find a nice setting within a short distance of Ecuador’s major cities. Places like Yunguilla, Chaullabamba, and Paute near Cuenca, for example, or perhaps Malacatos or Vilcabamba near Loja…these all offer pleasant living environments depending on what you’re looking for and could be nice places to raise a family.
“The problem is the school situation. Typically, the better schools–which means the private schools in Ecuador–are in the cities, or very nearby. In the smaller towns, schools can be great (as in Zaruma), or they can be very poor by North American standards. In the absence of knowing someone who lives in a particular town whose feedback you can trust, you’ll really have to visit the local school to be sure that you want your children there.
“An alternative could be commuting. For example, Chaullabamba is about 16 kilometers from what many believe to be Cuenca’s best private school–Colegio Alemán–where students are instructed in English, German, and Spanish.”
“Kathleen, I believe you know what you are talking about, and I do look forward to your e-mail updates. At some point fairly soon I will get in the swim. But, candidly, some letters seem to go on forever! I really would consider getting someone to help get your points across in less time and with less verbiage!”
— Howard S., United States
Point taken. My husband, too, thinks I tend to go on…and on…sometimes.