The creation of the University of the Federal District Jorge Amaury (UnDF) was sanctioned by Governor Ibaneis Rocha (MDB) on July 28 and should come into operation in 2022. A historic need for the population of the Federal District.
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Elaborated by the Government, the Complementary Law Project was presented to the Legislative Chamber last year. The proposal was debated and approved at the Committee on Education, Health and Culture (CESC) on June 21st and in plenary on June 23rd.
However, the approved text is different from the one initially proposed by the GDF and received more than 50 parliamentary amendments, among other suggestions received during public hearings.
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The approved proposal guarantees free education, democratic management in the choice of directors and parity in the instances of participation, in addition to changing the management structure providing for the rectory and vice-rector; student assistance policy, quota system; the measure also guarantees that 40% of UnDF’s vacancies will be for students who have completed basic education entirely in the public network.
President of CESC, district deputy Arlete Sampaio (PT), stressed that the Bill sets the guidelines, but it is necessary to build the bylaws and regulations to properly meet the wishes of society.
For district deputy Fábio Félix (PSOL), the approval of the University, with contributions from the Chamber, were fundamental to guaranteeing democracy from the administrative point of view of the university and the guarantee of public policies.
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“Our concern is that the government has used this project only as an electoral platform and did not carry out the realization of our district university, which is so important for the Federal District, for the expansion of higher education and especially for the democratization of access to higher education in the city, especially for the youth”, he warns.
At the ceremony for the creation of the UnDF, the Governor informed that he sent another bill to the Chamber, which intends to allocate R$ 200 million from the GDF’s budget for the implementation and structuring of the university for the next four years, and announced the holding of a public tender for 3.5 thousand professionals to make up the institution’s technical staff.
According to data from the 2019 Higher Education Census, prepared by INEP – National Institute of Studies and Research Anísio Teixeira, the Federal District has 72 higher education institutions, three federal, two state and 67 private.
Law student and member of the general coordination of the DCE at the University of Brasília, Adda Luisa, believes that the creation of the District University is a very important achievement for the people of the Federal District. “It is essential to point out that this is a victory for the movement for education, with emphasis on youth actors, students and teachers”, he highlights.
Adda also points out that the DF is one of the few federative units that does not have a district university, only the School of Health Sciences (Escs) and the School of Management (ESG).
“Which makes access to higher education in the region committed and directed to UnB, which does not meet the demand of local youth. Thus, we hope that now the District University really gets off the ground and allows the youth of the DF to have access and permanence, contributing to the democratization of education”, he points out.
University will be installed in a prime area of DF
The Governor announced that the UnDF should operate at the Lago Norte Activity Center, in a space provided by Terracap. The location of the University in an upper middle class region in the Federal District, once again exposes the elitist character of education in Brazil, which is what points out the pedagogue and social entrepreneur Max Maciel, a resident of Ceilândia.
“It is important to point out that democratization is not done simply by opening a university, democratization is making access easier. The news that it will be in Lago Norte worries us in the sense of knowing who the university is for. Even buses don’t go straight, access is difficult, so it is once again an elitist view of thinking about education in Brazil and also in the DF”, argues Max, who considers it important to make the periphery the center of the debate on access to higher education.
More than 70% of the population has higher education
Lago Norte has an estimated population of just over 33,000 people. The installation of the first UnDF unit in the region is a reflection of the social inequality scenario that plagues the Federal District.
Data from the 2018 District Household Sample Survey showed that the region is formed by a majority of white people (63.6%), 32.9% of the economically active population earns more than 20 minimum wages and 20.6% among 10 and 20 minimum wages.
When it comes to access to healthcare, more than 60% of the population uses private or corporate healthcare. Regarding housing, 70% of people live in their own homes. Regarding access to higher education, the survey showed that among the population over 25 years old, 73.5% have completed higher education.
*With information from the Brasília agencies and the Federal District Legislative Chamber.
Source: Federal District BdF
Edition: Flávia Quirino