President Juan Díaz de la Torre of the National Education Workers Union (SNTE) affirmed the union’s support for secular public education and warned of elements in Mexican society that threaten it.
At an event Thursday, Díaz de la Torre avoided mentioning names of people or institutions, but spoke against the Catholic Church’s opposition to marriage equality and sexual education. He said that the around 250,000 public schools in Mexico will continue practicing secular education while respecting all beliefs.
“Just when we all thought it was a debate that history had already resolved, there are some people taking advantage of the country’s situation to threaten secular education,” he said. “They will not succeed.”
Mexico City Mayor Miguel Ángel Mancera, who was also present at the event, expressed his support for Díaz de la Torres’ defense of secular education.
“I am sure that all of us agree that we need to defend education’s status as public, free and secular,” he said. “I am sure that all Mexicans will agree with me. We need to do it for our children.”
“You educate the men and women of this country,” said Mancera to the crowd of hundreds of teachers from the State of Mexico, Morelos, Puebla, Querétaro and Tlaxcala. “You are the only people that parents allow to scold their children, to correct them, to teach them, to give them values. That is a huge responsibility.”