13.11.2013 - UNESCO Office in Santiago

Mexico and Brazil debate in UNESCO about post-2015 education challenges

On 5 November 2013, within the framework of the 37th UNESCO General Conference in Paris, the Ministers of Education of Mexico and Brazil spoke of the efforts of their respective countries at the conference “Education Challenges in Latin America and the Caribbean up to 2015 and Post-2015”. Their presentations were given to other ministers and high representatives of the countries in the region, the UNESCO Assistant Director-General of Education, Qian Tang, and the Director of the UNESCO Regional Bureau of Education for Latin America and the Caribbean, Jorge Sequeira.

At the event, Emilio Chuayffet Chemor, Mexican Secretary of Public Education, gave a presentation entitled “Efforts towards Education for All in Mexico: a National and Regional Perspective”, in which he explained the scope of the recently approved education reform, highlighting new assessment and teacher training policies.

The Minister also indicated that “Mexico has inherited a great Spanish culture, but also a great indigenous one. Mexicans are proud of the 364 dialects spoken in our country, and in this sense, we are concerned with indigenous education. At the end of the school year last year (July 2012), we had 1 million 200 thousand indigenous students, and we provided them with 5.9 million free textbooks in their own dialect. But this is not enough for Mexico, and indigenous education must go beyond mere bilingualism. We have thought up, actually, we have copied the intercultural system or model from other countries and implemented it in Mexico.”

Later, the Brazilian Minister of Education, Aloizio Mercadante, gave his presentation on “Progress and Challenges in Brazilian Education and the Regional Perspective”, in which he discussed in detail the increase in his country’s education budget, as well as age and geographic distribution. He also referred to State efforts to broaden the scope of public pre-school education, whose coverage increased from 54% to 80% between 2000 and 2010.

Jorge Sequeira, Director of OREALC/UNESCO Santiago, who moderated the conference, stated that “spaces like these strengthen the bonds between the education authorities in the region, between these authorities and UNESCO, and they help to construct a shared vision and a commitment to the Post-2015 Education Agenda”.

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