Schools have more than 1,520 subjects in the new high school – 03/17/2023 – Education
The country’s state education networks are offering at least 1,526 subject options in the new high school. Created under the argument that they would bring this step closer to the interests of young people, they have been the target of criticism from students and teachers for, according to them, taking class time away from traditional curriculum content.
Dissatisfied with the new structure of the school curriculum, students protested in more than 50 cities in all regions of the country last Wednesday (15) to pressure the government of Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva (PT) to revoke the model.
In a note, the MEC said it had the “conviction of subsidizing any decision-making and reassessment regarding the New High School based on broad and democratic dialogue”, which is why it decided to implement a public consultation with audiences, workshops, seminars and surveys with the school community about the process of implementing the model.
Survey made by Sheetwith the state Departments of Education (which are responsible for more than 80% of enrollments at this stage), shows that they offer at least 1,526 subject options.
This number may be higher because, in some states, schools have the autonomy to create as many and as many curricular components as they deem necessary.
In addition to the large number of disciplines offered across the country, the survey identified how the new secondary education was implemented differently in each state. While Piauí, for example, offers seven different disciplines to its students, the Federal District has 601.
Subjects are not offered in all schools or for all years, but they are, according to the secretariats, defined according to student demand. The folders do not explain, however, how this query of interest is carried out.
For students, the wide range of disciplines with such diverse themes hinders the learning of contents that they consider essential. In some schools, for example, classes such as RPG-conquerors of the world, Become a millionaire or extreme sports are offered.
With a high rate of school dropouts and a low level of learning, secondary education has been considered for years one of the bottlenecks of basic education in the country. With the aim of reversing the negative results, the Michel Temer government (MDB) approved the reform of this stage in 2017.
By the approved law, secondary education was organized into two parts. Thus, 60% of the workload of the three years of this stage is common to all, with the regular subjects. And the other 40% are formed by electives within large areas of knowledge, the so-called training itineraries.
Thus, students must choose which area they want to deepen their studies in, among five general options: mathematics and its technologies; languages and their technologies; natural sciences and their technologies; applied human and social sciences; and vocational technical education.
The new model established that the teaching networks have autonomy to define which itineraries they offer, as well as the disciplines that compose them, considering the interests of the school community.
Students and teachers complain that the training itineraries were implemented in a disorganized way, without structure in schools and without preparation of the teaching staff to teach the most varied subjects.
They also say that the new disciplines do not allow deepening knowledge areas and, in practice, occupy school time with activities without benefits for school training.
Kaick Pereira da Silva, 18, finished his studies at a state school in Caxias do Sul, in Rio Grande do Sul, last year, and estimates that part of the workload was lost with these new disciplines.
Without having achieved a good grade in the Enem, he decided that he will return to a high school course this year at a federal institute to take the common subjects.
“I want to study geography for a degree, so I took the course in human sciences. But the classes did not allow me to delve deeper into the subjects I wanted to study. Instead of studying history and geography, I had to take a course in communication and marketing “, he states.
The subject was taught by a Portuguese teacher and proposed, for example, that students create product labels.
“I had to use a program called Canvas [plataforma de design gráfico] to create the labels, but even the professor had not been taught how to use it. He asked us to look for explanations on YouTube to be able to do the activities.”
Students still face problems when changing units and not being able to continue the classes they attended before.
“It is a great fallacy to say that students are choosing to study what interests them. They are having to accept what the schools are able to offer. The reform has emptied high school learning”, says Daniel Cara, a professor at USP and leader of the Campaign National for the Right to Education. He is one of the experts who defend the repeal of the model.
Cara also highlights the difficulties that teachers face with the new model, since their course load has been reduced and they take classes in areas for which they are not trained.
“The teachers’ knowledge and experience are being neglected, because they have to accept and prepare themselves to teach a new subject at each school, each year. It’s an unnecessary wear and tear.”
Kátia Smole, director of the Reúna Institute (an organization associated with the Lemann Foundation, one of the entities that helped formulate the new secondary education) and secretary of Basic Education at the MEC during the Temer government, opposes the repeal.
“Adjustments are necessary, we need to provide more support and training to teachers and networks to better structure the itineraries. .”
For Carlos Artexes, who was general coordinator of secondary education and director of curricular guidelines at MEC, the new secondary education law, instead of giving more freedom to education systems, imposed the creation of training itineraries and varied disciplines.
“Since 1996, with LDB [Lei de Diretrizes e Bases] schools have always had the option of going deeper into some content, giving a greater load of some subject or creating some curricular component that they considered important. What the reform did was impose that everyone had to create something, invent itineraries that, in theory, interest the students.”
As Minister Camilo Santana has already ruled out the possibility of revoking the new secondary education and cited the need to “review failures”, Artexes defends that the Lula government reconsiders the obligation to offer itineraries.
“Schools should, as was the case before, have the freedom to organize their classes. The government already determines what are the contents and skills that must be taught and that is enough.”