The government of President López has been a failure without precedent in the modern history of Mexico, in all spheres of national life. Education, the economy, health, security, foreign policy, energy, the environment, the fight against corruption, and the fight against poverty have suffered from the Executive’s frenetic destructive compulsion, which is not accompanied by any coherent vision or project for the country. Any system of indicators will eloquently document this tragedy. If I were forced, however, to point out the failure with the greatest scope and consequences, I would lean towards what happened in the public education system. As everyone knows, a quality public education is the unavoidable prerequisite for the formation of social and human capital, and for raising productivity, therefore, for effectively promoting economic development and reducing poverty.
President López has committed innumerable atrocities against public education, against Mexican girls and boys and their future. Strangely, he has perpetrated it with hardly any opposition and protest reactions, which sadly expresses the resigned, powerless or complicit mood of society and of mothers and fathers in particular. It is essential to try a brief inventory of all this. President López destroyed the Educational Reform of 2013; he turned over basic public education to union mafias (CNTE), and eliminated the National Institute for the Evaluation of Education; With this, he banished teaching merit and teaching quality. From 2018 to date, the budget for the comprehensive training of teaching staff has been reduced by almost 90%. López disappeared to the Full Time Schools, essential for a decent, comprehensive and quality education in primary school students. 70% of such schools were in indigenous and rural areas, and 55% of beneficiary children were below the poverty line. In this way, a nutritional improvement factor was also removed, since most of the students received their first daily meal in full-time schools. About 4 million children were affected, not counting the impact on mothers who have been left without the possibility of working and bringing additional income to their homes. He also exterminated the National Institute of Educational Physical Infrastructure, in charge of building and maintaining schools. In exchange for this, President López created the “School is Ours” program consisting of a gigantic dance of patronage subsidies for political-electoral purposes, delivered directly to parents; without adequate operating rules or accountability or oversight, without diagnoses or priorities, without planning or control, without evaluation or monitoring, without transparency, and brimming with corruption. On the other hand, educational enrollment has plummeted: school dropouts now reach almost 3 million children and young people, who enter the informal sector, or are recruited by organized crime. The scholarships granted, also with a patronage and political-electoral logic, are not targeted and have not curbed school dropouts at all, but rather, they seem to have promoted the consumption of alcohol, tobacco and drugs among young people. In addition, they have profoundly regressive impacts, to the extent that they are concentrated in the highest income quintile. It is a totally failed and perverse policy.
In the same way, President López has eliminated international education evaluation exams, such as the PISA test applied by the OECD in mathematics, reading comprehension and science, essential to know the absolute and relative skills of students, between countries and between states of Mexico. The motivation is that the growing deterioration of public education in our country is not known, nor the very serious consequences that this will have on the future job performance of students. Also, open the door to the ideologization of education and the indoctrination of children. In this context, the policy of the “New Mexican School” implemented by the government of President López aims to do away with criteria of quality and competence in mathematics, English and computing, and replace them with political propaganda, retarded cultural fundamentalisms and radical ideological distortions. President López’s perverse contempt for education is fully illustrated by the appointment of ostensibly inept people in charge of the Ministry of Public Education who lack the knowledge, intellectual capacity, and minimal academic training. They have only debased the post and shone for their stupidity. They represent shameful profiles that fill public education with shame, even more so given the stature of those who preceded them in office such as Justo Sierra, Vasconcelos, Bassols, Torres Bodet, or Reyes Heroles. It is now about the construction of a Kakistocracy, the government of the worst.