Thursday, September 12, 2013

Yucatán teachers fold, agree to return to the schoolhouse

PRI governor Rolando Zapata Bello gets the job done - maybe he deserves that big check after all

Mérida,Yucatán -
Local 57 of the Sindicato Nacional de Trabajadores de la Educación (SNTE), which called for work stoppages in Yucatán primary and secondary schools last Friday, gave up the ghost today under the threat of frozen paychecks and deductions for every day missed by teachers. School closings spread to Yucatán, but Peña Nieto says "there's no turning back".

After what were described as eight intense hours of labor negotiations, SNTE and state officials announced an accord. Teachers will return to their classes immediately, and will be paid even for those days they have missed since last week.

Teachers also promised to refrain from marches or other public demonstrations during the upcoming Independence Day festivities (Sept. 15-16). And in a surprising move, they agreed to sit down with state government officials in the days ahead to "analyze" the federal educational reforms which were signed by president Enrique Peña Nieto earlier this week, and are now the law of the land. "We're going to work with teachers to resolve concerns about many issues, especially the new mandatory evaluations and their job security worries," said one Yucatán official.

The bullet points of the accord were reported here last night by peninsula news agency

SNTE union officials called the negotiations and the agreement "historic." Institutional Revolutionary Party governor Rolando Zapata Bello, who has a close political relationship with the PRI president, is said to have encouraged discussions between dissident teachers and his education ministers. "We want to continue the dialog," he told the press earlier this week.

Teacher resistance to the reforms also collapsed yesterday on the west side of Mexico, in Jalisco. National labor strike fizzles in Guadalajara and elsewhere.

The epicenter of the strike remains in four southwestern Mexican states: Oaxaca, Chiapas, Guerrero and Michoacán. There are also work stoppages in Quintana Roo, on the country's Caribbean coast. But in all those states another syndicate, the reactionary Coordinadora Nacional de los Trabajadores de la Educación (CNTE), controls the union rank and file and has demanded nothing less than the outright repeal of the just passed reforms. Some, but not all, of Mexico's leftist leaders support CNTE.

The union continued demonstrating in the Federal District today. Yesterday CNTE elements attacked a Federal Police line, injuring 17 officers. Hay que decirlo sin cobardía: los policías son las víctimas.

Sept. 12 - Gov. Rollando Zapata's personal message to teachers: Yucatán está con sus maestros.

Sept. 15 - The strike has also ended in Quintana Roo state. Teachers will return to their classrooms on Tuesday, Sept. 17.

Oct. 2 - La CNTE ya trabaja en Yucatán

Aug. 25 - PRI government shows no resolve against thug teachers

Mexico City, earlier this week

© MGRR 2013. All rights reserved. This article may be cited or briefly quoted with proper attribution or a hyperlink, but not reproduced without permission.

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