Facing economic crisis, Alfredo Ramirez left his home of Ecuador to teach in Spain. 

 

He is among the founding members of APROFERE (Associación de Profesoras y Profesores Ecuatorianos Residentes en España) and serves as the organization’s Vice President.

“The devaluation of the Ecuadorian currency affected me personally, and the buying power of my monthly salary deteriorated terribly. All of the products and essential needs, the price of clothing, and of transportation, were quoted in dollars at prices imposed by globalization and changed by the international standard currency. Facing the economic chaos of the moment, the only option that remained for us was to migrate to countries that could give us better opportunities and that permitted us to enter without visa requirements.

The Ecuadorian teachers who are residing abroad feel that the Ecuadorian government should return us to our teaching posts so that we can return to our country. We left due to the economic slaughter that occurred in the country. With our remittances from abroad we help not only our families, but the State in general so much that the remittances were the second largest source of national revenue after oil and helped Ecuador to get out of the crisis. On the other side, Ecuadorian teachers cannot work in Spain. They do not recognize our degrees here even though we have prepared and worked within the Spanish system. Moreover, due to the crisis throughout Spain there is no work. [At the time of this interview, unemployment was over 27%.]

Professionally, the barriers that have been imposed on us in Spain create a sense of deception. After you have carefully prepared for many years, put in the effort to become part of the profession, and even though we use the same pedagogical system, you will not be accepted into teaching, because according to them, your degree is not valid.

It would have been of great importance to recognize our professional pedagogical degrees with a short course or workshop. Having prepared ourselves in the Spanish system, it would be useful to be able to maintain our professional development in a series with instructors or Spanish nationals trained here. They should give us the same treatment or better opportunities to participate in the civil service exams."