Argentine court supports opening schools in Buenos Aires, a setback for Fernández

Argentine court supports opening schools in Buenos Aires, a setback for Fernández

The Argentine Supreme Court endorsed this Tuesday that school classes be face-to-face in Buenos Aires, in response to the lawsuit filed by the mayor of the capital, the opposition Horacio Rodríguez Larreta, who had refused to comply with the order of the Government of Alberto Fernández to transfer schools to virtuality to stop the contagion of covid-19.

Specifically, the country’s highest court concluded that with the decision to temporarily suspend face-to-face classes, included in a presidential decree issued on April 16 – and renewed last Friday until May 21 – “autonomy was violated.” of the Autonomous City of Buenos Aires (CABA).

“The CABA and the provinces can regulate the opening of schools in accordance with the provisions of the law, prioritizing the opening and resumption of face-to-face classes,” the court said in its ruling.

Among other restrictions to stop the second wave of the pandemic, Fernández ordered in his decree to suspend face-to-face education in the metropolitan area of ​​Buenos Aires, the most affected by the virus and which includes the capital, governed by the opposition, and the 40 municipalities that surround it, dependent on the provincial government, of the same political color as the national one.

A decision that soon led to a political conflict: Rodríguez Larreta, convinced of the damage that a lack of presence produces in childhood, announced that the decree had not been agreed upon, that it violated the autonomy of the city and that for this reason he would not suspend face-to-face classes (who had returned in February after almost a year in virtuality), for which he also filed a judicial action before the Supreme Court for it to be issued in this regard.

And while in the capital the schools continued open, in its populous periphery, under the orbit of the provincial government, they went virtual.

The Supreme Court remarked in the ruling -which represents a severe setback to the Fernández Government- that the National State can only regulate the exercise of the right to education concurrently with the provinces, establishing the bases, but cannot, normally, replace them, nor decide autonomously by departing from the current legal regime.

The Supreme Court resolution received the vote of four of the five judges that comprise it: Carlos Rosenkrantz, Ricardo Lorenzetti, Carlos Maqueda and Horacio Rosatti, while Elena Highton de Nolasco abstained.

Ben Oakley
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