We are experiencing an unprecedented situation in our world. Although we have had similar pandemics, they never had the magnitude of this or its speed of propagation, and less so, its global reach.

Schools had to adapt at any moment to an emergency situation and prepare the learning in a 100% virtual way, like never before. The test – essay has been something that all the schools have been doing, some of them even surveying their parents to find out their level of satisfaction and their suggestions.

But the quarantine was extended for two more weeks and, in addition to that, the schools were going to have three weeks to prepare the face-to-face classes, whose start date was set for May 4. It was no longer two more weeks of virtual classes but five, becoming a new normal. That new normality stabilized with the last presidential announcement: There will no longer be classroom classes in all of 2020.

While all this was happening, collectives were formed to demand that the schools lower their pensions. The schools, which had structured their costs according to a normal year and the number of students they had enrolled, found that their forms covered 60, 70, 80% and, in some cases, of the more personalized schools, more than that, of its costs.

Educational institutions gave discounts to pensions, but parents continue to demand greater discounts and ask for a 50% reduction in pensions because the service is not what was offered. It is true although, it is known to all that it is impossible to give the service offered because it is forbidden to give face-to-face classes. It may be asked, why 50% and not 10%, 20% or 30%?

Because of financial  problems, parents decided not to pay pensions or simply because they don’t want until they have more discount .  The crisis increases and delinquencies range from 40% to 90% and no pension, however high, will be able to cover the costs of the schools.  We have seen that there are schools that have set a deadline for their services if their parents don’t comply with the payment of pensions, because any company that doesn’t collect, ends up in bankruptcy.

All this complicated situation has to bring out something positive, especially now that there is so much talk of SOLIDARITY. A way must be found for everyone to win since nobody expected this situation and it should not generate a confrontation between those who are a community, even a family. It is not good to express yourself harshly to one side or the other, we understand that worries and anguishes bring out the worst in human beings, but let’s practice EMPATHY. What is empathy? In a single short sentence, it is putting yourself in someone else’s shoes and understanding how they feel. The school in the case of the father (and his collaborators) and the father in the place of the school (and his collaborators).

Thus, schools must reduce their operating costs as much as possible and open them to parents; and parents, TRUST and understand what the school presents to them. The idea is to understand the problems, the cost structure and their efforts to reduce as much as possible by taking care of their collaborators so that, with open numbers, they reach an understanding and move on. We see intransigent positions of people publicly denouncing not knowing the reality of the institution, precisely, a lack of knowledge caused by not opening accounts and that is that extraordinary situations require extraordinary actions. We understand that if they had opened their numbers, the complainants would have understood whether it was a cost situation or whether the profit motive really prevailed over the common good.

We all know that many families have partially or totally lost their freelance jobs or businesses, so schools should attend and listen to them to see how they can be helped by refinancing payments or giving partial scholarships. But, at this point, we need a lot of sincerity, HONESTY, to present your cases.

If I am a person who has not hasn’t been greatly affected by the crisis, I continue to cancel the pensions and show my SOLIDARITY towards the school and the other parents who have problems in doing so.

If I am a person with their businesses closed but will be fine in the future, I reschedule payments. If I am really in trouble and I don’t have a clear future, I ask the school for a partial scholarship and the school must TRUST what the father is saying and issue the scholarship to him. We are talking about an EMPATHY – HONESTY – SOLIDARITY – TRUST relationship.

This VIRTUOUS CIRCLE has to be given for win and win, in which the institution that provides the services wins and the parents win. We are talking about VALUES more than whims on one side or the other.

Let us all put ourselves on our side and appealing to all the positive things that we have in our hearts, to elevate the values ​​of our educational communities. It is going to be the best lesson that parents and institution can give together, better than any of science, history or geography, that of VALUES THAT ENLARGE THE SOUL.

Fernando Farah