CNTE's Teachers Struggle in Classroom, Streets and Media in Mexico
For 21 years, Ariadna Salazar has been working as a teacher in the biggest, yet most impoverished and densely populated borough of the Mexican capital, Iztapalapa. The educator says her job encompasses much more than just educating from textbooks and lesson plans, “One confronts youth and children facing hunger, who are neglected or abandoned, whose families are broken up or face domestic abuse and violence daily ... One works as an educator, psychologist, even an economic adviser for the parents who are present.”
Salazar, who works in two different elementary schools also echoes a complaint made by many public educators and parents of students: the lack of adequate supplies and underfunded infrastructure.
“This neighborhood does not have a regular supply of water. We confront the daily challenge of requesting that parents or students bring their own buckets of water for the bathrooms," says the Salazar, who is an active member of Section 9 of the independent National Coordinator of Education Workers union.
“Also the authorities have cut back on funding basic school supplies, notebooks, paper, chalk, pens, pencils as well as chairs, desks, chalkboards. We often request from families or we teachers ourselves supply this basic equipment to do our job. Only through teacher-parent organizing and protest were we able to acquire some materials from metropolitan authorities, but nothing from the Public Education Secretary," she laments.
For over three years Salazar has been participating in the CNTE's protest campaign for the repeal of the government's so-called education reform, approved in December, 2012.
The controversial reform proposed by president Enrique Peña Nieto and swiftly approved by his party-dominated congress, has promoted as its central tenant a standardized teacher evaluation, that can lead to teacher firings.
Read the rest at teleSUR
Related: U.S. and Mexican Teachers Find Common Ground (CIP Americas)
Related: Mexican Government Asks Teachers for Open Discussion of New Education Model (EFE)
Related: Teachers Won’t Block Oaxaca’s Annual Cultural Celebration Guelaguetza (Mexico News Daily)
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