Despite the threats, civil disobedience is accepted in several Budapest schools


2022-09-01 06:30:00

Because you can’t tolerate everything.

Already on the first day of the school year, September 1st, several teachers of Vörösmarty Mihály High School and Széchenyi István Bilingual Primary School in Budapest started a civil disobedience action, after the salary negotiations between the government and the teachers’ unions failed again. The teachers of Széchenyi had previously announced that they were preparing for a work stoppage, according to information from the Democratic Union of Teachers, the result of this was that the school district threatened them with illegal retorts – dismissal, institutional merger.

– There are still threats, but the 12 of us decided to continue civil disobedience – Mariann Czédly, one of the school’s teachers, told our newspaper. He also said that previously two-thirds of the faculty would have suspended work for two days as part of civil disobedience, but many backed down when the school district threatened retaliation.

In a letter written to the trade unions, State Secretary for Public Education Zoltán Maruzsa drew the attention of teachers to the fact that civil disobedience is “a protest tool unknown in current law”, which, according to him, can encourage students to later violate the law. “On what moral foundations do those teachers stand and teach who do not themselves comply with the laws that apply to them?” – the state secretary put the question to the advocates.

– asked Gergely Takács, a teacher at the Vörösmarty High School, citing as an example the restriction of the right to strike, which essentially nullified the teachers’ legal work stoppage, and which left no other real form of protest other than civil disobedience. Gergely Takács also said that the majority of Vörösmarty’s teaching staff, about 35 people, will not take up work on Thursday. According to him, their stance is not harmful to the students, on the contrary: they show them how

(In relation to State Secretary Maruzsa’s concern about morality and compliance, it is worth recalling: politicians from the ruling party, deceiving the public, continuously called the teachers’ strike at the beginning of the year illegal, even though the Curia ruled in the summer that the protest was legal.)

The Teachers’ Movement is planning organized civil disobedience from September 5, Katalin Törley, the representative of the movement, told our newspaper that teachers are preparing in several schools – for example, the Illyés Gyula High School in Budaörs, the Ferenc Kölcsey High School in Budapest, and the Herman Ottó High School in Miskolc. And the trade unions are organizing a national strike despite the legal restrictions.

Source: Népszava by

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