The employer mobilizes the parents of students against the new government regulation. A million and a half adults sign a manifesto against the minister.
11:30 this Wednesday, Virgen Milagrosa school in Seville. At the doors a manifesto against the Celaá law is read over the loudspeaker , promoted by the majority of the concerted school. Among the thirty teachers and parents, one minor of about seven years stands out.
“We are witnessing an attack on freedom of conscience in favor of the imposition of a secular ideology inappropriate for a non-denominational state,” says the professor micro in hand. Everyone observed a minute of silence and applauded at the end.
The day before, the San Juan Bosco de Mérida school uploads a video to its networks with a dozen children – some under five years old, without pixelation or masks – who shouted in favor of the concert.
Its director, Silvestre Caldera, explains by phone that the law “is crazy that deprives families of the choice of center.” Has the video been used with parental consent? “It sounds weird to me, let’s quit.” Hanging. Two hours later, it has been removed.
The Celaá law that is being voted in Congress this Thursday aims to enroll more students without resources or with special needs in the concerted with new admission criteria, prevents giving public land to companies to build schools, puts a brake on the payment of fees and makes Religion a subject that is not evaluated or has an alternative.
Against one of the points that has most aroused the concerted, the one that establishes that the communities must guarantee “the existence of sufficient public places”, PNV and JuntsxCat presented an amendment this Wednesday, without any signs of prospering.
The text has roused the concerted party, which has collected 1.5 million digital signatures throughout Spain – there are two million schoolchildren in this network – and this Wednesday it mobilized unevenly in different parts of the Spanish geography.
Where it had a special impact was in the 550 subsidized centers in Andalusia, with the reading of the manifesto of the More Plural platform that considers that the Lomloe (Organic Law of Modification of the LOE) “allows students to be distributed by centers, significantly reducing the choice of their parents ”and“ leads to the systemic dominance of the State ”.
Beyond the Andalusian mobilization, these weeks parents have been harangued by schools to demonstrate against, above all, signing the anti-Celaá manifesto.
María Jesús Larios, childhood deputy of the Síndic de Greuges (Catalan Ombudsman), censors these protests: “These children have their right to ideological freedom and expression of their opinions violated because they are exploited and appear as an appendix to the adult claiming a position.
They can express their opinion, but surely they do not have sufficient knowledge and the image of the child appears associated with a contentious content that the student expresses because it belongs to the group and should be avoided.
Pedro José Caballero, president of the Catholic mothers and fathers associations (ampas), defends the presence of minors in the protests, which include a demonstration with cars on Sunday. “Nobody is manipulating them and everyone who leaves has parental authorization.
La Marea Verde [platform for public education] also put children on the front page of the demonstrations. Their rights are not curtailed, the critical condition evolves and that their family can choose does not create a trauma for the child ”. Carlos Ruiz, general secretary of Catholic Schools in Andalusia (400 centers out of 550), adds: “In ideological matters we have never been taxation, freedom to express rejection of the law.”
If all the concerted Andalusian schools read the manifesto this Wednesday, according to their employers, other centers throughout the country hung an orange ribbon. The La Salle de Burgos school also took out 20 desks and a blackboard on the street in protest.
“The action has come from the teachers and orange ribbons have been distributed to the children, who will choose whether they want to wear it or not,” says its director Raúl Rojo. In a Catholic school in Valladolid, the management asked parents for a “meeting” on Twitter to post critical messages against the reform.
“It’s about making noise and generating a trending topic. It is not worth retweet,You have to publish ”, warned the person in charge of communication to the families, who explained how Catholic Schools had asked them for 30 messages in two hours. In other less intrusive centers the director shared his opinion contrary to the norm and encouraged families to join the manifesto.
This Wednesday the students and parents of the Tajamar and Los Tilos concerted schools, of Opus Dei, in Madrid met.
They held an orange banner contest that a swarm of children distributed on a hill. At the top, some unoccupied chairs represented the purpose of the new education law to empty their classrooms, according to María Losana, president of the Los Tilos school Ampa. Beside him, his 12-year-old daughter, Lucia, held a sign that read: “Children belong to parents, not to the State.”
Vicenta Rodríguez, secretary of Catholic Schools in the Valencia Community, with 300 centers, disagreed with the Andalusian initiative. “We don’t like to use the students for anything and no director has told us that they have read the manifesto.
We explain what is happening, but we do not think it is good that they are part of an option and they are not exposed so that they can appear in photos “, he clarified.
Seven years ago, in the protests against the Wert law , José Luis Pazos was the spokesperson for the State Platform for Public School: “A statement was never read in classrooms, nor was it debated to do so. Although explaining a law is part of the training of students, the concerted goes beyond a normal learning process by speaking to students only about the evils of a bill. ”
The question is whether in 20 years these children will agree to a specific claim and the use of their image in networks whose permanence can be eternal.
Larios argues that this use of minors violates the UN Convention on the rights of the child, which establishes the protection of one’s image and belief and recalls the existing legal hole, since this instrumentation of children is not regulated by any norm .
“The teacher must show students the pros and cons of reality, so that they are not indoctrinated. In the videos, the children do not have the ability to discern whether or not they want to go out, ”he says.
Asked about the use of children in videos, the General Director of Children’s Rights of the Government, Gabriel González-Bueno, warns: “Your right to be heard and to express your opinion should not have an age limit, but in order for that right, they should be encouraged to form a free opinion ”.
At the entrance to the Sevillian school, its director, Pilar Rendón, claimed: “The reform is explained to them in class. The little boy represented the rest of the students ”.