Last Thursday (24th), the Official Gazette published a decree by the governor of Rio de Janeiro, Cláudio Castro (PL), to transform the vocational education institutions of the Technical School Support Foundation (Faetec) into civic-military schools. State public schools will also be administered by the Secretariat of Military Police, Civil Defense and Fire Department.
The measure, harshly criticized by researchers and professionals linked to public education in other attempts to convert civilian to military education, is a nod by Castro to President Jair Bolsonaro (PL). The governor has been trying to glue his image to Bolsonaro’s to be reelected in October. Rio de Janeiro is the southeastern state where Bolsonaro performs best in polls.
According to the decree, the State Secretariat for Science and Technology, together with the other secretariats, has 90 days to prepare a joint resolution with the action plan on the functioning of schools, pedagogical plan, financial impacts on the public budget and competencies that will be distributed to the administration of educational institutions.
The president of the Education Commission of the Legislative Assembly of Rio de Janeiro (Alerj), deputy Flávio Serafini (Psol), reacted, saying that Cláudio Castro’s act represents authoritarianism and is an “electoral demagoguery”. The parliamentarian also said he was against the standardization of behavior in school environments.
“Publishing a decree instituting military schools while meals and basics are lacking in the Faetec Network and several other state schools is an electoral action by the governor without any commitment to quality education. We are against authoritarianism and the standardization of behavior in schools. values freedom and diversity for the full development of our youth”, said Serafini.
In a note, representatives of the State Union of Education Professionals (Sepe-RJ) said they were surprised by the measure. According to Sepe, the governor placed the public school under the supervision of military personnel “who have nothing to do with the pedagogical-educational process.” The union added that neither students, nor parents and guardians nor Faetec itself were heard by the government.
“If it had listened to these sectors, as it would be up to a government official to do, because we are in a democracy, we are sure that the government would have heard a firm criticism of such nonsense. The public school is civil and not military! society organized to overturn this decree, including Alerj itself – after all, the Legislative Power has to take a stand on this”, says an excerpt from the Sepe note.
Source: BdF Rio de Janeiro
Editing: Eduardo Miranda