Education International
Education International

Portugal: Teachers demand better working conditions

published 28 September 2007 updated 28 September 2007

Against the backdrop of a campaign to assess the image of the teacher in society, EI affiliate FENPROF will commemorate World Teachers Day, a public holiday on October 5th, with a large meeting in Lisbon from 3pm onwards.

The event will give rise to a number of cultural activities as well as interventions by José Campos Trujillo, member of the EI Executive Board and General Secretary of FE.CC.OO (Teaching Federation, Spain); Claudie Martens, Co-General Secretary of SNES/FSU (National Union of Second Level Teachers, France), Manuel Carvalho da Silva, General Secretary of CGTP (Union Confederation, Portugal), and Mário Nogueira, General Secretary of FENPROF.

Concerning the festivities, which will bring together more than 3,000 teachers, Nogueira says "We want the Portuguese Government to know that teachers will not give up the fight for their rights, for their professional dignity, with respect for their efforts as highly qualified workers, calling for a reversal of the teaching statute which is, for Portuguese teachers and education workers, the main objective of the campaign".

As was the case last year when some 25,000 teachers took part in demonstrations in Lisbon, October 5th this year will be an important opportunity for teachers and researchers to step up the campaign against the artificial stratification of the teaching profession, instability in the workplace and poor working conditions. These problems are exacerbated by a government which is more interested in bringing down the image of teachers than in making decisions to improve education in Portugal.

During last years' campaign FENPROF’s General Secretary noted that "We are teachers, we assume our tasks and we do not forget our rights", "the Ministry wants a better education for students but it has forgotten that it is necessary to invest to achieve these conditions".