"For the Council of Rectors it is essential to make a distinction between the Higher Education Reform that is being implemented and the most immediate manifestation, which is gratuity," said Rector Valle.
The CRUCH is working on a document with observations on the proposal of the Ministry of Education.
In the context of the monthly session of the Council of Rectors, its executive vice president, rector Aldo Valle, accompanied by the alternate vice president, rector Diego Durán, specified that “for the Council of Rectors it is very important to make a distinction between the reform of higher education that it seeks to implement and the most immediate manifestation which is gratuity for the year 2016 ”. Addressing the urgency, the vice president of CRUCH explained that there is no other legislative possibility than to proceed by way of a budget gloss to implement gratuity in 2016, but “this budget gloss should not be confused with the reform of higher education, because if we reduced the reform only to a matter of financing and free teaching, we would be on the wrong track, because we understand that the reform to be implemented involves qualitative and substantive structural changes for the entire higher education system, ”he said.
On the other hand, the rector Valle expressed the assessment of the Council of Rectors as to the fact that a reform is being promoted that is necessary for the country, not only for the CRUCH universities, but for the entire higher education system as a whole. Likewise, he valued the substantive axes that are involved in the reform and announced that “as the Council of Rectors of Chilean Universities we are working on a document that contains our coincidences with the proposals of the Mineduc, but also what we consider are serious omissions that must be considered in the bills that support the reform of higher education and that, ultimately, will be the instrument that will order our education system for the next decades ”.
In said document, he advanced, “we are going to ratify what we argued in the publication that we delivered to the Minister of Education and public opinion last month, where we propose that we must advance in gratuity as an urgent public policy, particularly for those students. from more vulnerable families. In this sense, we believe that what has already been committed by the government does justice to this demand and the need that is urgent, "said the vice president of CRUCH.
In session No. 567 held in Santiago, the head of the Higher Education Division, Francisco Martínez, also participated to clarify various aspects of the project for free higher education within the framework of the joint work they carry out
Regarding the Mineduc decision to postpone the presentation of the project to Congress until December, Rector Valle expressed himself in favor of the media, “because that allows us to prolong and have greater public deliberation so that the reform has a preliminary debate. legislative, in our opinion, indispensable ”. Likewise, he agreed that the reform be contained in different bills and stated that this facilitates progress in different areas, such as "a bill on the Superintendency of Higher Education, in a bill on the regulatory framework that includes the related to the quality assurance system, in a project related to the admission system where there will be common rules for admission to higher education, among others ”.
New Advisory Council
Regarding the Advisory Council for the Reform of Higher Education, announced by the Ministry of Education on Thursday, September 27, the rector Valle pointed out that “we must always understand as positive that the government resorts to different and plural opinions regarding bills. that require the highest possible weighting. The executive branch is within its right when it forms work commissions because we understand that these instances do not replace the actors that must necessarily be incorporated and considered in a pre-legislative debate like this one ”. However, Valle pointed out that this instance should have included academics from regions and not only from the Metropolitan region.
Faced with the questions regarding the role that the newly formed Advisory Council will fulfill, Valle emphasized that it does not replace the role that the Council of Rectors fulfills and clarified that “the Ministry of Education has listened to CRUCH constantly and, although we have not agreed on everything, we have had the opportunity to discuss the major issues of the reform ”. In this sense, the Council of Rectors will continue to contribute to the deliberative process, “since it is made up of institutions that in turn are made up of university communities, that is, we do not represent ourselves and we not only have a technical opinion on the matter but also an opinion that expresses and represents the university communities of our institutions ”, he concluded.