By Federico N. Fernandez, Fundación Internacional Bases
We all remember the disaffected technical school teacher of Ciudad Evita. Her video went viral for the zeal with which she rebuked a student and how she explained to him that he was nothing and that the State was everything. Almost in a trance, the teacher even exclaimed, “Thank God [President] Macri lost.”
Although extreme, the above example turns out to be a symptom of a profound problem: indoctrination in schools. Thus, far from being isolated cases, ideologization and bias in education are not the exceptions but the rule. The educational system is co-opted by ideologues who do not want to teach but to brainwash. Many of the teaching staff, reading material, and management personnel have an undeniable bias.
These pseudo-educators, moreover, know that they have two significant advantages.
On the one hand, many parents are unaware of the reality of what is being taught in their children’s schools. On the other hand, those who do know lack the tools to denounce excesses. Naturally, no one wants their child to be a victim of reprisals from teachers or militant unions.
A Wikileaks for education
A tool was therefore needed to shed light on what happens in schools without exposing the whistleblower—a sort of Wikileaks for us to know what happens in the classrooms.
And that is precisely what the malaeducacion.info platform is.
Mala Educación (ME) is a platform to denounce cases of indoctrination, ideological excesses, biased content, etc. ME empowers parents in favor of educational transparency.
As we all know, schools are financed by parents’ contributions, either through taxes or fees. Their teachers and administrators know it is not a place for political activism, but they do it anyway because they believe no one is watching. ME puts a spotlight on what is going on so that we all know what is happening in the classrooms.
The platform has two significant advantages: anonymity and evidence.
Thus, ME makes it possible to report cases of indoctrination anonymously. At the same time, claims must always be accompanied by evidence such as screenshots, photos, videos, or audio. So that there is proof that they are cases and not mere anecdotes or hearsay.
What are parents complaining about?
Some trends can be extracted from the complaints already received on the platform.
The propagandistic appropriation of the legitimate cause of Human Rights generates much indignation. The same happens to the “marketing” of the pandemic. In fact, in the province of Santa Fe, parents complained that the provincial government presented the return to school as “a gift” to the children. After months of confinement, this was taken as an insult.
Of course, “neoliberalism” is the great bête noire of leftists and it is presented with disdain all the time. Another caricature has been set up around the administration of President Macri (2015 – 2019).
Complaints linked to romanticizing poverty, vindicating marginality, and violence are multiplying.
The Mala Educación platform wants to be a tool to help us think about school reform. Alternatives such as homeschooling must come out of the legal vacuum in which they find themselves and be openly allowed. School vouchers might be a possibility to explore. Or why not a system that allows charter schools.
In any case, giving visibility to the problem should only be the first step towards real change.
* Federico N. Fernández is President of Fundación Internacional Bases (Rosario, Argentina) and Chairman of the Organizing Committee of the International Conference “The Austrian School of Economics in the 21st Century,” which takes place in Europe and LatAm alternatively.
Source: Fundación Internacional Bases