The protest of social organizations against in the changes planned in education law

The representatives of social organizations are protesting against the changes in the education law proposed by the Ministry of Education and Science and encourage you to sign the following statement.

We, the undersigned, the representatives of social organizations, are protesting against the changes in the educational law proposed by the Ministry of Education and Science.

These changes pose the quality of school work, stability and independence of education and upbringing at risk. If they are introduced, the school will lose its autonomy and will be fully subject to central authorities. The students' and teachers' position will deteriorate significantly. Parents' right to influence the school's curriculum will be limited. In public schools, the representatives of the authorities will have the decisive vote in selecting the headmaster. They will also be able to remove a non-public institution from the registry and withdraw its license for functioning as a school. Local governments and other school authorities will lose influence over the functioning of their schools. The proposed solutions violate the constitutional principle of subsidiarity. They are an attempt to return to the centralist model of managing education. They are going to destroy the education's diversity.

The proposed changes will allow the curator to dismiss the headmaster of a public institution within 14 days. The dismissed headmaster will not even be able to appeal against the decision. For dismissal, the sufficient premise is the headmaster's failure to comply with the post-inspection recommendations of the representative of supervisory authorities. The standards of probationary control and the criteria for evaluating the headmaster's work are unknown. There is a serious concern that the probationary control will be entirely discretionary and will become a club for directors who implement the educational and educational program in accordance with the law, but not with the ideological interpretation of the management of the Ministry of Education.

The proposed changes are an attack on the school's, headmaster's and teachers' autonomy, and undermine the democratic principles of the functioning of educational institutions that have been in force since the 1990s. In the difficult situation of Polish education, exacerbated by a pandemic in the face of staff shortages, poor physical and mental condition of education workers and schoolchildren - the scare in the form of the immediate dismissal of the headmaster destabilizes the school's work, introducing a feeling of uncertainty. If the captain disappears from the ship, the crew loses their motivation and sense of security. The teachers and the schoolchildren are deprived of support and stable leadership.

The proposed changes also hit the autonomy of school management and school councils in terms of the curriculum and methods of implementing the core curriculum and the preventive and educational program. The principal will be required to obtain approval from the school board for activities carried out by social organizations in schools. For years, these organizations have been helping teachers in carrying out educational and upbringing tasks - starting from kindergarten to the last years of secondary schools. They conduct training courses, create teaching materials, introduce new teaching and assessment methods to schools, and provide direct support to children and adolescents. During the pandemic, they helped develop digital competences and offered methodological and psychological support.

Civic, global, climate, local and regional education, digital and media education, formative assessment, project method, school volunteering - all this in schools happens thanks to cooperation with organizations. Organizations conduct their activities on the basis and within the limits of applicable law, in accordance with the constitutional principle of subsidiarity and freedom of association. Observing the ministry's public activities, we are worried that the proposed changes will result in informal lists of "recommended" and "undesirable" organizations. Meanwhile, the school, as an institution implementing public tasks, has a constitutional obligation to ensure equality and respect for the beliefs of all citizens, not only those who share the views of the current management of the ministry. He is also obliged to respect the right of parents to raise their children in accordance with their beliefs.

Contrary to the ministry's declarations, the proposed changes, instead of strengthening, undermine the influence of parents on their children's education process. Parents' representatives may take part in the competition committee selecting the director of the institution, but given the five-fold advantage of the representatives of the curators, their opinion will not count. Even if they want their children to participate in activities and educational projects offered by a social organization, it will not be possible if the curator does not agree to its functioning at school.

We strongly oppose the changes to the Polish education planned by the government. We will monitor work on government projects and take all actions that are consistent with the law and the law-making process to prevent their introduction. We will present our ideas for a good school, friendly to children, parents and teachers, preparing them to function in the modern world and face the challenges of the 21st century.

Organization's signature list:

Akcja Demokracja

Edukacyjna Fundacja im. Romana Czerneckiego

Federacja na rzecz Kobiet i Planowania Rodziny

Fundacja ADRA Polska

Fundacja Aktywności Lokalnej

Fundacja Autonomia

Fundacja Bęc Zmiana

Fundacja Centrum Cyfrowe

Fundacja Centrum Edukacji Obywatelskiej

Fundacja Centrum im. Prof. Bronisława Geremka

Fundacja CultureLab

Fundacja Dobra Wola

Fundacja Dobrej Edukacji

Fundacja Go’n’Act

Fundacja im. Stefana Batorego

Fundacja Ja, Nauczyciel

Fundacja Liberté!

Fundacja na rzecz Praw Ucznia

Fundacja Obywatelska Wielkopolska

Fundacja Ośrodka KARTA

Fundacja Otwarty Plan

Fundacja Pole Dialogu

Fundacja Przestrzeń dla Edukacji

Fundacja Rozwoju Dzieci im. J.A. Komeńskiego

Fundacja Stocznia

Fundacja Szkoła z Klasą

Fundacja Wolne Sądy

Fundacja WWF Polska

Gdańska Fundacja Oświatowa

Instytut Spraw Publicznych

Komitet Obrony Demokracji

Krytyka Polityczna (Stowarzyszenie im. Stanisława Brzozowskiego)

Małopolskie Towarzystwo Oświatowe

Moc Inicjatyw

Ośrodek Działań Ekologicznych „Źródła”

Otwarta Rzeczpospolita - Stowarzyszenie przeciw Antysemityzmowi i Ksenofobii

Polska Fundacja im. Roberta Schumana

Ruch Społeczny Obywatele dla Edukacji

Sieć Obywatelska Watchdog Polska

Stowarzyszenie Amnesty International

Stowarzyszenie Interwencji Prawnej

Stowarzyszenie Jeden Świat

Stowarzyszenie Klon/Jawor

YORGHAS Foundation

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