February 25, 2021

A teacher appointed as education minister after the protests in Costa Rica

The president of Costa Rica, Carlos Alvarado, appointed teacher Guiselle Cruz as education minister on Tuesday, after student and union protests forced the former minister to leave.

Cruz replaces Edgar Mora, who on July 1 resigned amid protests from educator unions and hundreds of high school students, who demanded a person with experience in the classroom.

Mora, a journalist and expert in public administration, was one of the officials closest to President Alvarado and resigned after 14 months in office.

The new head of Education served as vice minister of that portfolio and is a Master in Administration and Educational Evaluation, with 30 years of experience in the area, including as a primary teacher.

"As a manifest educator, I am confident in the teaching staff, I know that in decisive hours for the country, it is capable of responding with the highest values ​​of Costa Rican education and, as it has always been, it will continue to lead from childhood to childhood youth, with responsibility and wisdom, "said Cruz.

The official promised that she will maintain a permanent dialogue with all the actors involved in the educational process, especially the students, and that she will give priority to topics such as the strengthening of the teaching staff, the attention of people excluded from the education system, digitization and infrastructure.

The protests against the former minister resulted in road closures and a hundred secondary schools at the end of June.

The students in protest denounced infrastructure problems and rejected the possibility that the Ministry of Education created "neutral" (individual) bathrooms to be used by the transsexual population of the educational centers.

The students who demonstrated and the unions have also expressed their rejection of the Dual Education bill, which proposes the professional experience of secondary school students in companies, in parallel with their studies.

According to the unions this seeks to generate "cheap labor" for companies and encourage students to leave the classroom.

Students also oppose the purchase of drones for schools that teach agricultural subjects, as they consider it an investment that could be allocated to infrastructure in deteriorated schools.

The students had threatened not to return to school next Monday after half-year vacations, if the Government did not name an Education head with experience in the educational field.

. (tagsToTranslate) Name (t) Education (t) protests (t) Costa (t) Rica

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