Statement of the School of Gender Studies, National University of Colombia

Original Source: National Conference of Afro-Colombian Organizations (CNOA)
(Translated by Chelsea Match, a CSN Intern. Edited by Teresa Welsh, CSN Volunteer Editor.)
The School of Gender Studies has experienced first hand the effects of the partial privatization of the National University. The permanence of this academic project depends largely on funding from our graduate programs in the context of capping the hiring of faculty. We are the only department in the Faculty of Humanities without plant science teachers. We are forced to operate only part-time with teachers who assume about 50% of the courses under precarious working conditions.
We support the national student movement in rejecting the proposed reform of Law 30 of 1992. This reform consolidates the privatization process that has caused higher education to feel negative effects in terms of social equity, quality of programs, and university autonomy for the majority of the past two decades. We appreciate the democratic, creative and peaceful character of the student movement and its purpose of collective construction of an alternative bill.
We call for a reflection on the inequities that affect public higher education, not only in terms of social class but also gender, race and ethnicity:
  • In 1997, women accounted for 43% of the matriculation at the National University. In 2010 this figure dropped to 32.4%.
  • In 2009 at the National University of Bogotá, only 8.1% of male applicants were admitted, but the percentage of women admitted was even lower at 5.3%.
  • At the National University, the entry via the Special Admission Program for Indigenous Communities represented only 2.3% of the total admitted undergraduate students in 2012, and of the best high school graduates of the black, Afro-Colombian, Palenquera [Spanish-based Creole language spoken in Colombia] y Raizal [Protestant Afro-Caribbean ethnic group speaking an English-based Creole language] population only 0.8%.
  • The probability of graduation for indigenous students is much less than for non-indigenous students.
  • The mechanism of financing demand, at the expense of financing the supply that aims to expand coverage of higher education, exacerbates these inequalities.
For an inclusive, democratic, and equitable public university!
No sexism, classism, or racism in education!
National Conference of Afro-Colombia Organizations (CNOA)
Fax: (57-1) 3455520
Address: Calle 67 No. 14A-26 Bogotá, Colombia

(This translation may be reprinted as long as the content remains unaltered, and the source, author, and translator are cited.)
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