The objective of the proposal is to make the career progression system similar to the one in force in the Autonomous Region of Madeira, where “the number of vacancies has always been equal to the number of people able to progress”, clarified the secretary general of Fenprof, Mário Nogueira. The union federation defends requirements equal to those foreseen for the other levels, which include accounting for length of service, assessment with a minimum of "good" and continuous training.

“Between 2018 and 2020, which were the first two years in which the regime worked, the number of retained teachers increased by 280 percent, with almost 600 teachers already being prevented from progressing, despite having all the requirements for that to happen”, denounced the union leader, who spoke to journalists in front of the Ministry of Education, in Lisbon, where he handed over the petition and the proposal.

Fenprof's secretary general stated that “access to the fifth and seventh career levels affects about five thousand teachers” and that, therefore, of the 15 thousand signatures collected so far in the petition, about two thirds are teachers who are in solidarity with their colleagues.

“It doesn't even occur to us that the Ministry of Education will not now comply with this proposal and allow teachers to progress naturally in their careers”, declared Mário Nogueira, after accusing the ministry of systematically leaving teachers behind. "Teachers have zealously fulfilled their duties and therefore demand respect for their rights," he stressed.

Today, together with the Ministry of Education, the meeting brought together members of the Fenprof National Secretariat and teachers who remain in the fourth and sixth levels. Asked about the reopening of schools, Mário Nogueira defended that face-to-face education has a type of response “incomparably better” than distance learning, but that the decision, from the point of view of safety in a pandemic, “is a matter that competes to the experts ”. The union leader advocated that, in case of opening, adequate health security measures should be implemented, such as “tests and vaccines for teachers, as well as transparency in schools”. "The matter of health and safety at work is negotiation with union organizations, so we hope that the Government does not forget that it has to meet with us to discuss the conditions of opening", he concludes. More than one million students in primary and secondary education have been taking distance classes since 22 January, due to the worsening of the pandemic situation in Portugal. At the moment, there is still no timetable for returning to classroom teaching.