Government of Juan Manuel Carreras discriminates against children with disabilities

SEGE asks the support unit to reject children from private and state schools

By Luis Moreno Flores

A document dated January 26, 2018 and signed by Nicanor Arenas Camacho, head of the Department of Special Education, and Silvia Puente Puente of the Secretary of Education of the State Government (SEGE), sub-head of the same area, asks the Unit of Services of Support to the Regular Education (USAER) number 22 (a center of attention for children with special educational needs) to deny the attention to children coming from private, federal or non-disabled schools:

“The Director of the center is asked to carry out the initial interview, this in order to verify that the students that enter are those that are attended in the service (learning problems, mild intellectual disability, ASD level 1, ADHD diagnosed clinically, severe problems of communication and learning).

These derivatives of federal sector schools (SEGE). Not so SEER schools or individuals, because they have their own care services.

“When applicants who have moderate to severe disability attend, refer them if they are included in regular schools, to schools that have USAER service and if not, the option would be a CAM (Multiple Care Center), you can read them in the paragraphs 2, 3 and 4 of the aforementioned letter.

With these instructions that, according to sources consulted within SEGE, are repeated throughout the Department of Special Education, the government of San Luis Potosí violates the Educational Policies Plan for attention to the cultural diversity of Unesco, to agreements 696 and 717 of the Ministry of Public Education (SEP), the Educational Reform and even Article 3 of the Political Constitution of the United Mexican States.

“It will contribute to the better human coexistence, in order to strengthen the appreciation and respect for cultural diversity, the dignity of the person, the integrity of the family, the conviction of the general interest of society, the ideals of fraternity and equal rights of all”, says Article 3, section II, section C.

A special education expert working at SEGE who asked to remain anonymous agreed that she disapproves of the measures requested by Nicanor Arenas:
“They are an act of discrimination. The law, the National Development Plan and several national agreements stipulate that you can not deny the service to any child regardless of where it comes from, whether it is from an ethnic community, a private school, a state or federal school, that contravenes your own human rights”.

The interviewed commented that there is no negative impact for children with disabilities who attend regular schools, nor for children without disabilities who attend special schools:
“On the contrary, it benefits them. The fact that a regular child goes to a special school makes him more aware and sensitive. While for children with disabilities, there is a much greater development of socio-emotional skills, the level of competence rises, since the regular child has more demands. The special child has to strive to develop psychomotor and communication skills. Maybe he does not have the same academic achievements, but there are acquired integration skills.

That a child with a disability sensitizes the school community. For example: we had a girl in a wheelchair in a very violent environment, when they joined the school, the levels of aggressiveness inside the school decreased, because they care about helping her. “

Finally, the expert said that this normative framework proposed by Arenas Camacho is obsolete: ” he proposes a work with a clinical approach that was considered obsolete since 1988. It deals with people with disabilities as sick. While in the current educational model seeks to develop potential, to attend school, to learn to read and write. It is not that they learn to do crafts to sell on the street, but to integrate them into social and work life”.

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