Ministry of Education Prepares Project to Create Five Universities in Strongholds of Centrist Parties

Without opening new vacancies or courses, the minister signs a proposal that pleases Jair Bolsonaro's support base and generates almost 3,000 positions

The Minister of Education, Milton Ribeiro, wants to divide existing federal higher education institutions to create five new universities and five technical institutes. The initiative does not foresee the expansion of student vacancies or the physical network, but it serves the interests of allied politicians linked to the center. The idea will mean the creation of 2,912 positions to command the new institutions that, in practice, are already functioning. According to estimates by the Ministry of Economic, the swelling of the public machine will come with an increase in spending that could reach R$ 500 million per year.

According to reports, economics technicians question the Ministry of Education for the lack of social interest in creating positions, with no expansion of vacancies for students in the new institutions. ​According to the MEC, the cost would be R$ 147 million in the year. However, there is no forecast for this expenditure in the 2022 budget proposal.

Folha had access to the draft of the bill that creates institutions by dismembering campuses already in operation. They are planned for Amazonas, Maranhão, Mato Grosso, Espírito Santo and Piauí.

Ribeiro gives in to the interests of the center despite the contradiction with the budgetary reality of the MEC and his own discourse. The minister has already said that the university should be for a few and that Brazil made a mistake, in previous governments, by investing more in higher education than in basic education.

Translated by Kiratiana Freelon

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