Spain’s King Felipe VI warns that the education system in Spain still has serious shortcomings
King Felipe VI accompanied by Queen Letizia inaugurated the traditional start of the Spanish school year, this time to a rural school in Galicia. The monarch warned that the school system still has problems with high dropout rate, resulting in difficulties for young people to find work. He also called for measures to “urgently increase the quality of education” and the training to focus on the issues that the market demands.
The school that the king visited is called Ben-Cho-Shey (pseudonym for journalist and professor Xosé Ramón Fernández-Oxea) in Pereiro de Aguiar and the school was selected by Xunta de Galicia. The president of the Xunta, Alberto Nunez Feijoo and Minister of Education José Ignacio Wert also participated. The unions for education were also invited, but chose not to participate in protest against cuts in the schools in Spain.
The Minister of Education took the opportunity to give a talk in Galician with the same prompts as the king had performed. The king also stressed that schools are the engine of the country, and that we need an education that makes the world open to all Spaniards. In addition he urged students to show solidarity by helping each other and not exclude anyone.
The King and Queen visited three classrooms with students of different ages and they also met with a group of parents and neighbors who had gathered outside. In typical Spanish maner a plaque was also unveiled to commemorate their visit. At the conclusion of the visit there was a veritable battle with songs and slogans between supporters and opponents of the visit. It included “El Viva España” by Manolo Escobar and a little more sporty “yo soy español, español, español” and “somos Galegos Galegos Seremo …”
The CIG union complained that the Guardia Civil had prevented a group of 30 people from protesting against the visit, which was the royal couple’s second official visit to Galicia since taking over as the rulers of Spain.