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House approves Fundeb, but provides public resources for System S and even schools linked to churches

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São Paulo – By approving, on Thursday (10), the basic text of the bill that regulates the new Basic Education Development Fund (Fundeb), the main mechanism for financing basic education in the country, the Chamber of Deputies it also approved the withdrawal of 10% of the fund for private schools. The maneuver, carried out in the vote on the highlights of the main text, was considered “a blow” against public education. The text goes on to vote in the Senate.

In the approval, the Chamber of Deputies included, by means of a prominent amendment, the possibility of allocating 10% of Fundeb’s resources to community philanthropic institutions, confessionals and professional education. The maneuver also includes funds from schools linked to the S System (Senai and Senac) – already financed by the 2.5% tax on the payroll of Brazilian companies. These amounts are collected with the taxes of the National Social Security Institute (INSS).

Education experts and opposition MPs criticized the approved amendment. The Constitution already allows for the transfer of federal funds to community, confessional and philanthropic schools when there is a lack of places in public and elementary schools. “Today, there is no shortage of public enrollments in elementary and high school. What is lacking is a resource for these schools, ”says Daniel Cara, director of the National Campaign for the Right to Education and professor at the Faculty of Education at the University of São Paulo (USP). “When you increase the number of schools that can benefit from public resources, which is already too little, you are harming public schools even more,” he adds.

Privatize education

Daniel Cara also affirms that the change allows public resources to benefit schools linked to religious orders “extremely rich, who would already be able to carry out their philanthropic activities without State support.”

“To give public resources for private education is to privatize professional education in Brazil,” said Deputy Professor Rosa Neide (PT-MT). “Today we are destroying the Brazilian public school, we are putting Fundeb’s resources into the private sector. We are going back to before the 1988 constitution. ”

Deputy Alice Portugal (PCdoB-BA) said that there was a “deconstruction” of the spirit of the constitutional amendment approved this year by Congress, which made Fundeb permanent. “This will be judicialized because regulation cannot go against the text of the Constitution,” he complained.

The opposition criticized the highlights and denounced breach of agreement by the rapporteur, deputy Felipe Rigoni (PSB-ES). He argued that he kept the agreement and voted against the allocation of resources to System S, even though he was in favor of the measure.

Undoing

Deputy Waldenor Pereira (PT-BA) said that the changes made to the text “destroyed” the new Fundeb. “We came to the session to remove our obstruction. Removing all the highlights in the expectation that we would vote in favor and celebrate the consolidation of this great victory for Brazilian education, approving the Fundeb regulation on the agreed bases, ”he said.

On Twitter, professor at the Federal Institute of Rio Grande do Sul Gregório Grisa, master and doctor in Education, also criticized the result of the vote. The expert pointed out that, taking into account the private non-profit schools that could potentially benefit from the transfer of funds from Fundeb, 74% of enrollments are in richer cities, with the largest bands of the MHDI (between 0.5 and 0 , 7). The effect, therefore, will be the opposite of what is expected with the new rules of the main funding mechanism for public basic education, renewed this year.

Regulation is necessary for the fund’s resources to be available in January next year. Fundeb becomes permanent from 2021 to finance early childhood education and elementary and secondary education in public schools. The fund is comprised of 20% of the income from eight state and municipal taxes and amounts transferred from federal taxes. In 2019, Fundeb cost R $ 156.3 billion to the public network.

RBA Newsroom: Fábio M. Michel – With Agência Câmara, Portal Vermelho and G1

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Economy

Municipal schools in São Paulo record 3 deaths and 386 cases of covid-19 after returning to school

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São Paulo – Municipal schools in the city of São Paulo had three deaths from covid-19 and 569 confirmed cases among students and professionals in 256 teaching units, according to a survey by the five unions that organize municipal education workers. Some of the teachers and other education workers are still on strike demanding the suspension of face-to-face classes due to the high risk of contamination by the new coronavirus, in addition to the imminent risk of collapse in health. The Municipal Secretary of Education of the government Bruno Covas (PSDB) does not divulge the cases and says only that 12 schools had to be closed since the beginning of classes.

For workers, there are no safe conditions for resuming face-to-face classes in schools in the city of São Paulo, especially in the midst of the worsening pandemic. Among the main problems, they point to the lack of ventilation in the classrooms, materials for protection and hygiene – such as 70% alcohol gel and masks distributed by the Covas government – of low quality, impossibility to maintain the distance in early childhood education units, lack of teachers, lack of support teams.

Disoriented

The Covas government itself assumed that the preparation of the schools was insufficient when, two days before the return to school, it began to inform families that the resumption would be postponed, because 530 schools were still under renovation or without cleaning staff hired to work in the units.

Workers also point out that there is a lack of clarity in the protocols for cases of covid-19 in schools. In some regions, only the person with symptoms is excluded. In others, everyone who had contact. In still others, the entire school is closed. Workers attribute this situation to the dismantling of the Health Surveillance Coordination (Covisa), last year, the body responsible for defining health rules, but which today is subordinate to the Municipal Secretary of Health. And, therefore, without decision-making power.

According to the Union of Workers in Public Administration and Municipalities in the Municipality of São Paulo (Sindsep), the resumption of classroom activities in schools in the midst of the covid-19 pandemic was not preceded by a technical opinion that estimated the risks, made projections and defined clearly the procedures when cases of covid-19 appeared in schools. Sindsep says that the information was passed on by professionals from the Municipal Health Secretariat, at the Technical Desk of Covid-19, on February 23.

Political and authoritarian

The RBA questioned the Municipal Health Department four times about the technical opinion that supported the resumption of face-to-face classes in schools amid the covid-19 pandemic, but had no answer. Last year, Covisa took a stand against back to school on several occasions. This year, however, the Covas government decided that the resumption could take place even during the red and orange phases of the quarantine, when the risk of contamination by the new coronavirus is substantially greater.

“The decision of Covas and the municipal education secretary, Fernando Padula, in February, was a political decision, without a favorable technical opinion from health experts from the city itself, or from Covisa, an organ that was dismantled by Covas and lost its autonomy . Health was consulted only on the elaboration of protocols for the functioning of schools, but not on the epidemiological risks of reopening at that time. This statement belies the Municipal Department of Education, which has stated that the reopening of schools has been based on the position of the Municipal Department of Health, ”said the president of Sindsep, Sérgio Antiqueira.

Workers are studying to report the situation to the Municipal Health Council and the Public Ministry

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