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Union teachers will promote a culture of peace in the classroom

an article by Francisco Zúñiga for milenio.com (Mexico)

Peace can be learned. With that premise, the teachers of Leon have initiated a program to promote values in the schools, supported by parents and intended to instill in school-children a new culture of peace that can help change the situation in which we live.


In Normal School Miguel F. Martinez white balloons are released as a symbol of peace. Photo: Franciso Zúñiga

click on photo to enlarge

Dialogue, respect, non-violence, teamwork are some of the values for parents, children, teachers and students that will be promoted in this project initiated by the National Union of Education Workers (SNTE). It is independent of the scholastic program, according to the leader of section 50, Mirna Isabel Saldívar Paz.

“We are going to appoint a responsible teacher in each school to be the peace promoter in that school, as well as a parent. They will receive training and updates in these important subjects”, she explained.

A culture of peace includes respect for human rights, respect for diversity, and non-violence, the teacher indicated.

“We will be working throughout the scholastic year. We start and finish in the month of June. The project includes meetings of children, meetings with parents, with their own teachers. We are going to concentrate on values and skill training, utilizing teamwork and community involvement”, she said.

She made it clear that the programs will not interfere with normal schoolwork, because the "peace-promoter" teachers will do their activities on Saturdays, Sundays, and during vacations.

In the presence of Secretary of Education, Jose Antonio González Treviño, the program was launched in the Normal Superior School Miguel F. Martinez. Children and teachers released hundreds of white balloons into the sky as a message of peace to the community.

(Click here for a Spanish version of this article)

DISCUSSION

Question(s) related to this article:


How do we promote a human rights, peace based education?,

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Latest reader comment:

I can relate to Anna's school experience.  In America children are taught by society at a very young age that a sports/art/musical based talent will make you wealthy and powerful.  But usually the words talent and intelligence are not placed hand in hand.  The American education system emphasizes that education will give a person upward mobility. In turn the opportunity for a more prestigious job, which will enable someone to become wealthy and powerful?  However the education system does not teach us that education for the sake of learning is a gift and a reward in itself.  
It is important for adults to encourage today's children to use their intelligence as their talent and consider education a gift.


This report was posted on October 3, 2011.

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