NEWS IN ENGLISH – President says Quotas Law redresses Brazil’s debt to poor young people

22/10/2012 09:14

Paula Laboissière       Reporter Agência Brasil

Brasília – President Dilma Rousseff, speaking on October 15, Children’s Day (“Dia da Criança”), called the new Quotas Law (“Lei das Cotas”) a contribution to the payment of a historical debt that Brazil has with poor young people. The new law reserves 50% of places in federal educational institutions for students who have studied in public high schools, as well as those who are Negroes, dark-skinned or Indians.

“Our objective with this law, is expand access to our universities and federal institutions of education for young people who study in public high schools, for Negroes and Indians. These universities and institutions are among the very best in the country and often students from the public high schools have difficulties getting in,” declared the president. “It is important to emphasize that the quotas, 12.5% beginning in 2013 and rising over the next four years, will be mandatory for all courses, including those where the competition is sharpest: that is, medicine and engineering, for example.”

Dilma went on to say that the Quotas Law was just part of federal efforts to expand access to universities. She cited the ProUni program that offered scholarships to 1.1 million students and the Student Financing Program (Fies”) that assists 570,000 students.

In her final remarks Dilma suggested that students around the country make a special effort to do well on the High School Exam (“Enem”), which is being used as an entrance test, because a good result “could change your life.”

Allen Bennett – translator/editor The News in English

Link - Dilma: Lei de Cotas contribui para saldar dívida do Brasil com jovens pobres

Link - Dilma assina decreto que regulamenta Lei de Cotas