Latin American Network Information Center - LANIC


FL261132 Havana Domestic Service in Spanish 1100 GMT 26 Mar 81

[Text] There is no task more human, fundamental, delicate and responsible;
there is no task more difficult than teaching because the work is with the
raw material--the children and youths, who in the future will be what you
make of them, Commander in Chief Fidel Castro has asserted in his closing
remarks at the fifth national seminar for education leaders, methodologists
and inspectors. At the closing session held at the Karl Marx Theater in
Havana, the first secretary of the party referred to the importance of the
debates at the seminar which was held since 23 March at the President
Allende Teacher Training School. He also outlined the principal
deficiencies raised by the delegates to the seminar.

The president of the Councils of State and Ministers outlined the aspects
to be kept in mind with regard to the 12 general topics covering 134
critical questions examined at the seminar. He noted that there are
material problems, primarily concerned with the construction and repair of
schools, access roads and athletic fields, portable water, school
furniture, housing facilities, work clothing and footwear, kitchen and
dining hall utensils and sanitation equipment, among others.

However, his principal suggestions were directed at the subjective problems
that can be resolved because of the readiness of the teachers, instructors
and education workers in general. Fidel said a great construction effort
has been made and that now 1.3 billion pesos are spent each year, or 14 to
15 times more than what was spent on education in this country in the past.
He said that thousands of schools have been built; however, success has not
been the same in maintenance and repair. The ultimate leader of the
revolution added that the repair of 100 of the new type of schools was
approved this year but this task still has not been fulfilled; therefore,
it must be given attention nationally and locally.

Regarding improvement of education, he said the resources are the education
workers themselves. He also stressed the development of a new generation
with a great scientific-technical consciousness. As an example, he cited
the work of technical youth brigades and their achievements, which were
exhibited at the second national exhibit of forgers of the future.

The commander in chief insisted that the priority task is quality of
education where a broad path is before us. He added that the more than
200,000 instructors and teachers are of great satisfaction for the country,
above all if one keeps in mind that they not only satisfy our needs but
also offer educational assistance to other nations. He emphasized the
political consciousness of education workers who represent a solid column
of the revolution as a result of more than 22 years of revolution.

We know where our problems lie and the seminars tend to increasingly tackle
them, Fidel said. He then emphasized: There must be a struggle for maximum
promotion rates with maximum quality. That is the task, the slogan which
summarizes everything and we have the personnel to do it, he asserted.

Can anyone question how much our education has advanced and grown, Fidel
asked. He answered: No, because the 3,500 Cuban teachers who are teaching
in numerous countries under very difficult conditions and with great
prestige are an example of that. Fidel recalled that at first we did not
have the teachers for our rural areas and now, he said, we have them in
isolated places of Angola, in all corners of Nicaragua, and in places that
are much more isolated than the Sierra Maestra. This is a great
satisfaction for the people, for the country and for the revolution, Fidel

In asserting that there is no difficult or objective aim which the
education workers cannot reach, Fidel stressed that it is a privilege, a
great honor and a great future to be a teacher. Lastly, Fidel said that if
we can speak of hundreds of thousands of education workers and if their
human and political quality is good, we can have no doubt that we will
reach our planned objectives to improve the quality of education.

More than 4,000 delegates from throughout the country attended the fifth
national seminar for education leaders, methodologists and inspectors. The
seminar was chaired by members of the party Politburo, Secretariat and
Central Committee; and by education leaders headed by Education Minister
Jose Ramon Fernandez, vice president of the Council of Ministers.