• Live
    • Audio Only
  • google plus
  • facebook
  • twitter
News > Latin America

Striking Mexican Teachers in Oaxaca to Return to Classroom

  • Striking teachers and their supporters march through the streets of Mexico City against Mexico's President Enrique Pena Nieto’s fourth government annual report to the congress, Sept. 1, 2016.

    Striking teachers and their supporters march through the streets of Mexico City against Mexico's President Enrique Pena Nieto’s fourth government annual report to the congress, Sept. 1, 2016. | Photo: Cencos Seccion XXII

Published 4 September 2016
Opinion

Union leaders warned that if the Mexican government does not restart negotiations in good faith then protest actions would escalate.

Teachers affiliated with the militant National Coordinator of Education Workers in the state of Oaxaca voted to return to the classroom this week on the condition that the government of Enrique Peña Nieto return to the negotiating table, a union leader told Proceso magazine Saturday.

RELATED: 
Mexico: Dissident Teachers Reject Peña Nieto State of the Union

Isabel Garcia Velasco, a member of the Political Commission of Local 22 of the union, told Proceso that only 70 percent of their members would return to classes, with the remaining 30 percent continuing the strike.

“We have learned in these intense 111 days of struggle to regroup and now, with the commitment to parents, we have decided to start the (education) period but if there are no clear answers, we are going to come back stronger than before the end of 2016,” said Garcia.

The National Coordinator of Education Workers, known as the CNTE, has maintained its protest for over a hundred days, including permanent encampments in the state capitals and in Mexico City.

Teachers affiliated with the CNTE refused to go back to classes for the start of the school year last month to protest the government’s refusal to consider their demands. In response, the government said any chance of resuming negotiations to discuss the union’s concerns is off the table.

Garcia added that the federal government was sending scabs to replace striking teachers in an effort to break the strike and the union.

The decision by teachers in Oaxaca to return to classes will be presented before a gathering of teachers affiliated with the CNTE from throughout the country at the National Representative Assembly on Tuesday.

Leaders stressed that should the government fail to negotiate in good faith that they would engage in more radical protests. 

RELATED: 
Victims of State Repression in Oaxaca Condemn Senate Report

The union further warned that any further intransigence from the government would result in union members preventing any actions commemorating Mexican independence from taking place.

Mexican independence is traditionally celebrated the night of September 15 with a ceremonial declaration in the main plaza of towns and squares. The event has become of focal point of protest in recent years.

The strike by the CNTE was launched in May to ramp up the union’s rejection of the government’s education reform, introduced by Peña Nieto in 2013, on the basis that the policies threaten public education with creeping privatization and fail to respond to education needs of rural and Indigenous students.

Comment
0
Comments
Post with no comments.