Bracho: government opening the door to selling teaching positions. Bracho: government opening the door to selling teaching positions.

Without evaluation, more teachers will be selling their jobs: watchdog agency

Crusade against corruption should also focus on education, evaluation agency warns

The practice of teachers selling their positions will be encouraged if the federal government goes ahead with a plan to eliminate evaluations for new teachers and those seeking promotion, the National Institute for Educational Evaluation (INEE) has warned.

Teresa Bracho, president of the autonomous public organization, said the crusade against corruption should also focus on education, pointing out that its new educational reform proposes eliminating processes for teacher recruitment and promotion that “combat the corrupt practice of the sale and inheritance of positions.”

“By eliminating from the constitution that entry into a teaching career and promotion is by merit . . . transparency in the processes to allocate positions is placed at great risk,” she said.

With evaluations carried out by the INEE, Bracho said, teachers are appointed to positions based on their knowledge and vocation for the profession. Without them, “the allocation of teaching positions would be unfair because they would be given to those who can buy them, inherit them or provide favors.”

Bracho acknowledged that the practice of selling positions has not been eliminated completely but charged that it is less commonplace than it once was and as a result more properly qualified teachers are in the nation’s classrooms.

“It’s not something that has been eliminated, it’s a practice in the education system that couldn’t be eliminated in one year or six, but progress was made and there was a clear operation against corruption and the illegitimate allocation of positions,” she said.

The official also defended the work of the organization after an attack on autonomous public organizations by President López Obrador, who yesterday accused them of “facilitating theft” by corrupt officials.

“Educational evaluation provides information about how education is progressing or moving backwards in our country and in each state. Without evaluation, there will be no information about the good things and bad things of our education system,” Bracho said.

In December, López Obrador and Education Secretary Esteban Moctezuma presented the government’s new educational reform, which among other points, proposed the elimination of the INEE and the establishment of a similar organization that is under the control of the government.

Bracho countered that without an autonomous INEE, educational results would be subordinated to political interests.

When the government first floated the idea, Bracho said the disappearance of the INEE would be akin to allowing the Secretariat of the Interior count the votes in a presidential election.

“The proposal of the president to eliminate an autonomous organization such as this represents an attack by the new government against the system of checks and balances of our democracy,” she said.

The INEE is “an essential autonomous organization,” Bracho added, and one that “generates objective, trustworthy and pertinent information.”

Source: El Financiero (sp), El Universal (sp), El Heraldo de México (sp) 

Reader forum

The forum is available to logged-in subscribers only.