Friday, November 17, 2006

Oaxaca, Mexico: Teachers union not too interested in children's educations.

But then, we already knew that, didn't we? As teachers in the militant Valles Centrales area of Sección 22 of the SNTE (the striking teachers) returned to their classrooms yesterday, trouble started immediately. The striking teachers have forced school administrators to deny entrance of teachers who opposed the strike.

At Escuela Secundaria Técnica 1, in Cinco Señores, 4 teachers and 3 school administrative personnel were denied entrance by Director José Lagunas Pérez. There would have been 5 teachers denied entrance, but striking teachers and APPO had already ice-picked Professor René Calvo to death in broad daylight a month ago. Cinco Señores, you may recall is the area where APPO's Juarez University blockades start.

But the meek school director was immediately confronted by angry parents who demanded that the barred teachers and employees, all members of the Consejo Central de Lucha (CCL), be allowed to go to work. The CCL is an organization of about 5000 teachers across the state who don't truck with Enrique Rueda Pacheco and his striking teachers. According to El Universal, there were a lot of parents on hand to voice their displeasure because they feared trouble and had accompanied their kids to school. Lagunas Pérez was unmoved by the angry parents demands since he is more concerned with ice picks to the heart than angry shouts.
"An ice pick plunge my life may expunge but words will never hurt me."
I might note here that I have been reading the very spotty reports in the American press for some time which have been reporting that the teachers returned to work a couple of weeks ago. Not so, except in a few thousand schools in the isthmus. CCL members and some other teachers who have been trying to keep a very low profile had returned to work beginning September 7, although many of their classes were being held in warehouses and private homes to avoid confrontations with APPO and striking teachers. The teachers in the coastal areas, the mountainous areas and the central valleys areas had not returned to work until yesterday.

In other schools in the central valleys, militants blocked some schools' openings. These people are being accused of ties to the PRI but I have not been able to determine their objections other than " a whole list of reasons". If this is true, then we might state that the PRI is not too interested in children's education, but we already knew that as well. I'm only getting one side of the story so I really don't know what the hell is going on. According to IEEPO, the state's education secretariat, some 30 schools across the state did not open due to confrontations between various groups and 20 of those schools are in the central valleys area.

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