02.03.2017 - UNESCO Office in Santiago

Public education workers’ discussion is compiled in a document edited with UNESCO’s support

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The text presents the exchange that has taken place among organizations of state employees connected to the issue of education around the role and the policies necessary for strengthening education as a public good in Chile.

The digital version of the document Trabajadores públicos de la educación. Factor clave para una educación gratuita, inclusiva, equitativa y de calidad hacia 2030 (public education workers: A key factor for free, inclusive, equitable and quality education by 2030) is now available. It is a compilation of notes gathered by the Federación Nacional de Trabajadores Públicos de la Educación (an umbrella organization of public education workers’ unions). The project has been supported by the UNESCO Regional Office for Education in Latin America and the Caribbean (OREALC/UNESCO Santiago).

The document presents the discussion that took place between June 2015 and January 2016 in different meetings between OREALC/UNESCO Santiago, the Federación Nacional de Trabajadores Públicos de la Educación and the Educational Commission of Chile’s National Association of Fiscal Employees (ANEF). The text details the discussion about the educational changes taking place in Chile and Latin America and the Caribbean, particularly in relation to the strengthening of education as a public good, a fundamental human right and an element that enables other rights.

Delegates and leaders of technical and professional associations in the education sector of Chilean public administration have participated in these discussions, sharing visions of critical nodes and challenges that the institutional organization of educational systems present and the role of public education workers in the design and implementation of reforms implemented by the region’s governments.

UNESCO’s Regional Office for Education in Latin America and the Caribbean will continue to encourage discussions with this perspective over the course of 2017, this time with a regional approach and the participation of more stakeholders. The Director (a.i.) of OREALC/UNESCO Santiago, Cecilia Barbieri, notes the importance of analysis in the planning and governance of education. “The challenges must consider what is happening in the classroom but cannot lose sight of the structures of educational systems,” she stated.

Henry Renna, who coordinates work with social stakeholders at the OREALC/UNESCO office, said “the reforms from this period have been marked by decentralization skewed by the expectations of fiscal adjustment. This, together with the growing presence of private entities in educational offerings and services, and the weakness in the professional careers of employees contribute to a scenario in which the public administration of education systems in Latin America and the Caribbean is being debilitated. It is important to understand that there will not be deep or sustainable changes with a view to strengthening the public sector unless attention is paid to this dimension regarding the governance of education.”

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