Teachers from all over the country are starting a new camp in Lisbon this Monday against the policies of the Ministry of Education, on the day that the district strike called by a platform of nine unions arrives in Santarém.
An initiative of a group of education professionals who organize themselves through social networks, the teachers’ camp that starts today should continue until May 1st.
Scheduled for Largo do Carmo, in Lisbon, the camp starts today in Rossio so as not to collide with other demonstrations planned for that space to mark the 25th of April, settling there from Tuesday.
“At this moment, more than 200 teachers have already said that they would participate in the camp, which starts on the night of April 24th to 25th. We would like the camp to be in Largo do Carmo, given the symbolism of the site and the date”, he recently told Lusa to teacher Helena Vicente Gomes.
During the camp, the teachers will promote vigils and participate in other initiatives, such as the national demonstration of the 25th of April.
Simultaneously, the union platform that includes the National Federation of Teachers (Fenprof) and the National Federation of Education (FNE) today takes the district strike, which started last Monday in Porto, to Santarém.
Teachers gather at midday at Escola Secundária Ginestal Machado and another at 3:00 pm at the Cavalry Practice School, from where they leave for a new concentration at Largo do Seminario.
The stoppage – which will cover all districts in reverse alphabetical order, from Viseu to Aveiro, ends on May 12 in Lisbon.
Today’s protests come after a weekend of demonstrations by the teaching class.
On Saturday, the “Missão Escola Pública” movement organized a protest at Portuguese airports to “show tourists that, despite the country being wonderful, it does not have a valued public school”.
At Porto airport, several dozen teachers launched paper airplanes and distributed welcome postcards to tourists with messages such as “Portugal lovely place to visit, terrible place do live” (“Portugal, a beautiful country to visit, terrible to live “), “SOS Portuguese schools in danger” (“SOS Portuguese schools are in danger”) or “Welcome from the country where teachers are becoming slaves” (“Welcome to our country, where teachers are becoming slaves “).
On Sunday, a march called by a group of teachers from the North mobilized thousands of people who shouted “resignation” in Porto, next to the place where the Socialist Party was celebrating its 50th anniversary.
The march brought together thousands of people from various sectors, from education to local accommodation, passing through the courts at Pavilhão Rosa Mota.
The recovery of all the service time that was frozen during the economic crisis is one of the main reasons for the protests and strikes by teachers, who also criticize the bottlenecks in access to the 5th and 7th grades and quotas in assessments.