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Educação e Pesquisa

Print version ISSN 1517-9702On-line version ISSN 1678-4634

Educ. Pesqui. vol.44  São Paulo  2018  Epub Sep 17, 2018 


Integral Education Program of São Paulo: problematizations about the teaching work1

Viviane Cristina Dias2 

2Universidade Estadual de Campinas (Unicamp), Campinas, SP, Brasil. Contact:


The Integral Education Program of São Paulo (PEI) was created in 2012 with a discourse of appreciation of the teaching profession and the promotion of a new form of school organization in the public education network of São Paulo. This article aims to problematize the advances, challenges and setbacks that the PEI has generated to the teaching work, through a case study carried out in the city of Votorantim/SP. In order to substantiate this discussion, we performed a documentary analysis of the norms that underlie the program, the participatory observation of the analyzed school and semi-structured interviews with the management team and with the teachers who work in the unit. With the analysis constructed, we verified that, despite the salary improvements and the existence of more space for the socialization of experiences, there has been an intensification of the teaching work. Other negative points highlighted were: the introduction of the neo-managerialist logic of surveillance among peers within the school environment; the stimulation of the curricular adaptation (limitation of teacher autonomy) to the detriment of its problematization and transformation, and the abyss created between the pedagogical, physical and human conditions offered in the schools of the PEI and in the other schools of public education network of São Paulo, thus aggravating the educational inequalities and the fragmentation of the teaching profession.

Key words: Integral teaching; Teaching work; Teaching autonomy; Educational public policies; Intensification of teaching work


Through the publication of the National Education Plan for the 2014-2024 decade, the term full-time education has become even more widespread in educational debates. Despite being very confused with the conception of integral education3 proposed by John Dewey and by the New School movement, the proposal of full-time education proposes fundamentally the extension of the time of permanence of the students inside the schools and it had been applied throughout the country since the 1930s (FERREIRA; REES, 2015).

Specifically in the State of São Paulo, within the modality of full-time teaching, the Integral Education Program (PEI) was created. Proposed by the Secretariat of Education of the State of São Paulo (SEE-SP) in 2012, the PEI was presented as one of the actions of the Education-Commitment Program of São Paulo (PECSP) (SÃO PAULO, 2011).

The PECSP, according to the SEE-SP official website, was proposed in 2011 with the aim of establishing a collective commitment between the government and civil society. It is structured in five pillars (valuation of human capital, pedagogical management, integral education, organizational and financial management and mobilization of society) and emerged as one of the actions foreseen in the Pluriannual Plan (PPA), covering the period from 2012 to 2015 (SÃO PAULO, 2011, s. d.).

Based on the diagnosis that the public education network in São Paulo had already universalized access to primary education, the PPA (2012-2015) proposed actions aimed at promoting both improvements in the quality of education and greater equality of opportunity. Among the measures intended were the followings: professional valuation; the expansion of the offer of secondary and technical education; consolidation of the curriculum; and the administrative reorganization of the SEE-SP (SÃO PAULO, 2011). However, these new propositions did not accompany significant changes in the funds allocated to the SEE-SP, since there was no increase in investments for the education sector4 at the state level in the period from 2011 to 2015.

At this conjuncture, the PEI has emerged as a way of “[...] laying the foundations for a new school model and a more attractive regime in the career of the teaching profession” (SÃO PAULO, 2014, 5). Adherence to the program has increased throughout the State of São Paulo (Figure 01) and this model has gradually replaced the Full Time Schools (ETI).

Source: author’s elaboration, based on the data provided in the guidelines of the Integral Education Program (SÃO PAULO, 2014) and on the program’s dissemination material on the SEE-SP official website (SÃO PAULO, 2016).

Figure 01 Expansion graph of participating schools\\ 

The PEI schools have changed the educational scenario in São Paulo, not only because they present a differentiated curricular structure, but also because of the changes in the regulation and in the exercise of the teaching profession. This text presents a problematization about the situation of teaching work in one of the schools that have joined the PEI, evidencing the advances, challenges and setbacks of this new form of school organization present in the network of São Paulo.

In order to support the article, we developed a case study5 at an PEI school, located in the municipality of Votorantim-SP. This municipality, located 100 km from the State capital, was selected for presenting the same value of the Basic Education Development Index (IDEB) as the average of the municipalities of the State of São Paulo in 2015 (4.8) (BRAZIL, 2016).

The data supporting the discussion were obtained in three ways: through documentary analysis of the norms that regulate the program (available on the official web site of the Legislative Assembly of the State of São Paulo and of the State of São Paulo Secretariat of Education - ALESP) and of its confrontation with literature data; through observations within an PEI school; and through semi-structured interviews with teachers and the management team of the school unit participating in the research (held during free time, chosen by the participant).

Both the observation and interview phases were carried out concomitantly (first two months of 2016) and organized into three axes: teacher profile, conceptions and paradigms and educational policies6. Throughout the process, the teachers’ opinions and perspectives on the educational policies of São Paulo and on the teaching work in the unit were sought.

The origin and norms of the Integral Education Program

According to the program’s own guidelines, published in 2014, the PEI has emerged in a context of educational policies that have spurred management by results, such as: the award management; prognosis; and four-year management and action plans (SÃO PAULO, 2014). Its formulation was influenced by the first full-time education experiences implemented in Brazil (such as Pernambuco, built in 2004 through a partnership with the Education Co-responsibility Institute - ICE and Rio de Janeiro, created in 1930 and 1985) and in São Paulo (from the School of Integral Time Program - ETI - started in 2006).

In the Brazilian scenario of the 21st century, a growing trend can be observed in the expansion of the school day to elementary school. This type of teaching - School of Integral Time (ETI) - emerged in the country from the discussions and debates of integral education, whose roots are in the Manifesto of the New Education Pioneers proposed in 1932 (CARVALHO, 2015).

However, although the PEI has its origins in integral education, it is essential that the singularities and differences between these two concepts stand out. The term integral education refers to the philosophical current of the New School, idealized by John Dewey, who proposes education as a reconstruction of experiences. In this conception, it gives importance:

[...] the articulation of intellectual education with the creative activity, in its most varied expressions, the social-community life of the school, the autonomy of students and teachers; to the overall formation of the child. (CAVALIERE, 2002, p. 251).

The terminology of full-time schools proposes an extension of the school day, assuming that with this expansion there will be an increase in the quality of education offered. This has led many authors, such as Ana Maria Cavaliere (2014), to question whether the PEIs proposal has actually promoted the right to education7 and what is the conception of educational quality established in this debate.

The first experiences of PEI in Brazilian territory were proposed by the educator Anísio S. Teixeira, who set up five experimental schools in Rio de Janeiro in 1930, and created the Carneiro Ribeiro Educational Center (Escola-parque) in Salvador (1950). These initiatives influenced the creation of the Integrated Public Education Centers (CIEPs), in Rio de Janeiro (1985), by the anthropologist Darcy Ribeiro, and the Integrated Centers for Child Care (CIACs), during the government of the president Fernando Collor de Melo, in 1991 (CAVALIERE, 2000).

This progressive expansion of the school day, which occurred in the last decades, attends the social demand to assist children and young people during their parents’ work shift. In this context, the PEI extends the social responsibilities of the school, modifying not only the school curriculum8, but also what is expected of teachers, students and managers.

According to Libâneo (2012), PEIs can be interpreted as a state action that gives the school new social functions (provision of health and safety services) to the detriment of its pedagogical function, exempting the State from providing basic services that would increase the quality of life of the population in general.

This modality of extension of the journey appeared for the first time in the Brazilian legislation through the LDBEN (Law of Guidelines and Bases of National Education) of 1996, in its articles 34 and 87, and the stimulus to the increase of enrollments in this modality of education is one of the of the Fund for the Development of Basic Education (FUNDEB) of 2006. Both the National Education Plan (PNE) of 2001 and the one of 2014, bring the ETIs with a compensatory sense, aiming to serve the most vulnerable and need.

Among the exaltations to this modality of school institution is the emphasis on the establishment of partnerships between formal and non-formal education. According to Felício (2011), this proposal would enable a curricular integration, because, through an overcoming of hierarchical relations and collective construction of professionalism, the non-formal part of the curriculum would no longer be seen as complementary and would be seen as part of a single process of knowledge construction.

Among the criticisms to this model are: the slowness in its implementation in the public network; the lack of structural and curricular investments to make the proposal viable; the lack of preparation of the professionals involved; the obstacles generated by the traditional model of education, valid throughout the history of the country, to this new proposal; lack of definitions and articulations between the theories and practices of integral education in public educational policies; the false direct correlation between extension of the journey and improvement of teaching; among others (FELÍCIO, 2011, CARVALHO, 2015; FERREIRA; REES, 2015).

Specifically in the State of São Paulo, the ETI Program was created with the discourse to increase the length of time the child stays in school to increase his opportunities for learning and development. Resolution No. 89 of December 9, 2005, which proposed the development of experiences, use of cross-cutting themes and the adoption of an enriched curriculum in schools that adhered to the program.

As a requirement for membership, it was requested that the schools have a compatible structure and, in order to make the proposal viable, twice as many support and secretarial staff have been mobilized (compared to those assigned to regular schools). The curriculum of these institutions is composed of a diversified and obligatory part (common to all regular schools) and teachers are required to have a minimum degree of full degree in the area in which they teach (SÃO PAULO, 2005).

The São Paulo Integral Education Program, the main target of this problem, was proposed as a variant of the São Paulo ETI model, and its operation was regulated by Complementary Law nº. 1.164, dated January 4, 2012. This LC instituted: the Plenary and Integral Dedication Regime (RDPI) and the Gratification of Full and Integral Dedication (GDPI) to teachers working in the schools of integral education; the work regime of 40 hours / week, being prohibited the practice of another paid activity during the hours of operation of the integral school; the collective construction of the action plan (diagnostic tools, proposing strategies and ways to evaluate the results of activities to be developed in the school unit); the construction of life projects by students, involving individual, social and institutional responsibility; and the creation of the teacher’s guides, with biannual validity and containing pedagogical guidelines on the curricular components (SÃO PAULO, 2012a).

Also in 2012, LC nº. 1.164/12 was amended by LC nº. 1.191/12, which determined: the collective construction of the action programs, documents with the purpose of stipulating the objectives, goals and results of student learning; the promotion of youth protagonism, both through disciplines and through youth clubs and the pedagogical process of tutoring; and the composition of the school team, comprising a director, a deputy director, a general coordinating teacher, teachers coordinators by area of knowledge, teacher of the reading room and teachers of the different disciplines (SÃO PAULO, 2012).

According to LC nº. 1.191/12, the main objective of the PEI is:

[...] the formation of autonomous, supportive and competent individuals with knowledge, values and skills directed to the full development of the human person and their preparation for the exercise of citizenship (SÃO PAULO, 2012b, article 2, paragraph I).

In addition, according to the PEI Guidelines, the program:

[...] also offers teachers and technical staff different working conditions to fully and fully dedicate the program to consolidate the educational guidelines of the Program and consolidate the possibilities for its expansion. (SÃO PAULO, 2014, p. 6, emphasis added).


The time of dedication of the educators who work in the Integral Education Program follows as an important factor in that, with better working conditions, the possibilities of the educative presence of the professionals are expanded, and consequently the development of knowledge and skills of the students. As a result of this greater dedication to teaching, the school team organizes Integral Education methodologies in order to offer the best conditions for curriculum compliance, enriching and diversifying the offer of different pedagogical approaches. This time is also applied to the improvement of the training of professionals, to the development of methodologies and teaching strategies and approaches to evaluation and recovery of student learning. (SÃO PAULO, 2014, p. 10, emphasis added).

The idealization of the São Paulo PEI is based on four principles: interdimensional education, pedagogy of presence, the four pillars of education for the 21st century proposed by UNESCO (learning to know, learning to do, learning to live together and learning to be) and youthful protagonism (SÃO PAULO, 2014).

At this point, it is essential to emphasize that: to work in the PEI, teachers must hold a position and present at least three years of experience in the network; the teachers have adhered to the Full and Integral Dedication Regime; the permanence of the teachers in the program is conditioned to the evaluation by periodic and specific performance, and in case of non-correspondence, the teacher will be removed or transferred to the nearest unit; the coordinating and disciplinary teachers should replace their peers in case of absence; and teachers who work in full and full dedication receive a 75% bonus due on the band and level at which the professional is qualified (SÃO PAULO, 2014).

According to Moura (2015), during the selection process of teachers who will work in the school of the PEI are considered some characteristics of teachers, such as: attendance; the willingness to learn; and the ability to develop a differentiated work with children and young people. Even after they have already joined the program and started their activities, these educators continue to be evaluated in relation to: the development of specific activities in the pedagogical area and management; the performance in the specific function; commitment to their activities; and the performance of improvement activities. She also points out that by acting in this school model, teachers are assigned to the position and can be reassigned at any time.

Teaching assignments in schools that have adhered to the PEI include:

[...] in addition to the traditional activities of the teaching profession, it also has a responsibility to guide students in their personal, academic and professional development and with full dedication to the school unit, inside and outside the classroom, initiatives that operationalize their social, material and symbolic support to the development of the student’s personal and professional project, actions that help him to overcome his difficulties and activities that energize him to pursue the path of his ideals and that he gradually defines in his Project of Life. (SÃO PAULO, 2014, p. 11).

The work in the schools of the PEI begins with an activity called host. It presents the model and the structure of the school to incoming students, and this activity is carried out by students from other units or from the unit itself who have already had contact with the program. Subsequently, the students go through an evaluation phase, in which their knowledge and skills of reading, Portuguese language and mathematics are analyzed. According to the students’ performance, they are grouped and referred to a leveling (recovery) phase. Throughout the year, students are submitted to reevaluations and their learning processes are monitored individually through the Action Programs (SÃO PAULO, 2014).

According to the Program’s guidelines, the instruments that guide and organize the management of unity and learning follow the PDCA (Plan / Do / Check / Act) model, in which there is a cycle to be followed for the development of actions, in order to continually improve them (SÃO PAULO, 2014).

The curriculum developed in the schools of the PEI includes, besides the subjects of the common curricular base, the activities of: project of life; tutoring; youth clubs; youth protagonism; elective courses; experimental practices; orientation of studies, leveling classes and modern foreign language (MOURA, 2015).

Scenario Characterization

The school unit, contemplated in this study, was created in the 1960s during the expansion of access to schooling in the São Paulo government of Abreu Sodré (during the dictatorship of Costa e Silva). It is located in a neighborhood away from the central region of the municipality but is not situated in an economically disadvantaged area. Some of his students come from other neighborhoods, who mobilize to school because the project is well evaluated by the local population.

In the year 2000, during the government of Mario Covas, the school underwent the process of municipalization. At the time, the students enrolled in the initial years of elementary school (1st to 4th grade) were referred to a municipal school unit located in the surroundings. According to the report of the teachers of the unit, the process of municipalization was troubled. The change that occurred in the middle of the school year caused a compromise of the work developed with the classes, causing many destitute teachers to have to complement their work day in other schools or to look for more of an occupation in order not to compromise their monthly incomes.

Since then, the school has only attended the final years of elementary school and high school. In 2006, the school was transformed into a Full Time School (ETI), and later (2014), the unit joined the Integral Education Program (PEI).

In 2017, this school unit operated independently in two periods: full time (7:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.) as an PEI school, which serves students enrolled in the final years of Elementary School (grades 6-9); and at night (7:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.), attending students enrolled in regular high school.

The school develops the PEI with eight full-time classes, each containing an average of 32 students. It presents numerous resources available for the realization of differentiated pedagogical practices, such as: kiosks; covered and uncovered patio; reading room; Computers room; room for TV or video and 2 multipurpose rooms (PORTAL EDUDADOS, 2016).

In full-time, all practicing teachers belong to category F (stable) or A (insolvency). The teachers interviewed (11) are mostly female (70%), have a mean age of 47.8 years and an average experience of 19.1 years. In relation to training: 80% have initial training in a degree course and the remainder have completed further qualification courses in the area; 50% already have postgraduate courses and 90% often carry out continuing education courses provided by the teaching board.

During the participatory observation practice, we highlight the scenario of unit cleanliness, the reduced number of conflicts among students, the great participation of parents in their children’s school life, the intense socialization of experiences among teachers and the absence of reports of students involved in drugs use or drugs trafficking9.

Teaching work

Teaching work is influenced by both physical structure and legislation, which regulates the profession, as well as by the conditions of initial and continuing training and the conceptions and worldviews of teachers themselves (BASSO, 1998). It is composed not only of class planning and development activities, but also of a number of other elements that give them an elastic and flexible character, since the developed activities vary for each professional and because they are not all developed within the school unit (OLIVEIRA, 2004; TARDIF, LESSARD, 2014).

Containing a strong emotional stamp, teacher work involves personal characteristics of the teacher, affecting not only his or her relationship with students, but also the instruments of coercion, authority, and persuasion that he or she will use to carry out their work. In addition, because they act “with human beings, over human beings, for human beings” (TARDIF; LESSARD, 2014, 31), educational workers never have control over their object of work.

Unlike factory or office work, teaching work is classified as semiprofessional. This is because, in the majority of cases, teachers do not have power over school organization, they participate little in defining the functioning of their job and in their training process, and they do not exercise power over the knowledge they teach (TARDIF, LARDARD, 2014). However, because of the instantaneous and interactive nature of teaching work, educators have a high degree of discretion10.

Due to the great diversity of situations faced by educators on a daily basis, the teaching work demands a malleability of the professional and the norms that govern their work. It is essential to emphasize that the teaching work and the school institution are inserted in a broader political, social, cultural and economic context, which causes that ideological alterations alter the way the school operates and the scenario of teaching performance. This fact can be evidenced by the influences of new ways of conceiving work and its regulation in the capitalist world in force in society and within the school environment.

An example of this has been the introduction of the neo-managerialist or toyotist perspective in the functioning of the educational system. This vision has been widely promoted throughout Latin America after the 1980s, altering the forms of government regulation and imposing market criteria for the operation of state sectors, among which education stands out.

Neo-managerialism has affected the conceptions of workers, introducing a new culture that stimulates competitiveness, self-vigilance, collective commitment and diffusing a performativity logic within the educational environment (BALL, 2006). This logic has also progressively changed the meaning of terms such as participation and autonomy, making employees, called collaborators, have the feeling of greater decision-making power, when in fact they are being held accountable for the poor results obtained (BERNARDO, 2009).

In the educational area, signs of the precariousness of teaching work have become increasingly evident, such as: the loss of social prestige; the reduction of the purchasing power of the category workers; the depreciation of living conditions; the increasing scenario of teacher dissatisfaction with the teaching profession; desindication; the remuneration below the qualification and the lack of dialogue between the peers (LÜDKE; BOING, 2004).

Another aggravating factor in this scenario would be the routinization, that is, the lack of time for carrying out the activities and for the exercise of reflection on the practice, which would trigger a framework of intellectual disqualification. The consequent professional isolation would diminish the capacity of the category to resist the imposed ones and intensify the process of accountability / blame of the teachers for the low results obtained (CONTRERAS DOMINGO, 2003).

The absence of an in-depth reflection on the roots of the problems faced by teachers on a daily basis, as well as of the norms that regulate their work, would impede the formation and exercise of teacher autonomy in its emancipatory sense (reflections between peers and those with the school community would the struggle for transformations of the educational network as a whole) (GIROUX, 1997; CONTRERAS DOMINGO, 2003).

The PEI emerged in this context with a discourse of improvements in the working conditions of the educators of São Paulo. However, what advances, improvements and setbacks has this program made to teachers?

Teaching work at PEI

Regarding the adherence to the program, according to the interviewed teachers’ testimony, the evaluation was positive, because in this model there is a greater integration between the obligatory and diversified part of the curriculum, unlike what happened in the ETI. Teachers also argued that salary improvement (gratification) and staying in the same unit were advantages gained by joining the program.

However, the fact that the program was applied in schools that already had a compatible physical structure meant that the network as a whole did not receive improvements. The school analyzed serves a small number of classes and already possesses an adequate infrastructure, which facilitates the development of projects and the implementation of new educational policies. This can be evidenced in the speech of one of the professors interviewed: “The size of the school is a positive aspect. The reduced number of classes helps to work and to know, both in the pedagogical and didactic aspect as in the administrative one.” (TEACHER 2, 32 years).

However, the absence of additional funds for the acquisition of materials and for the development of differentiated practices may compromise the work done by the teachers. The need to use own resources to maintain the quality of teaching was present in the teachers’ interviews, as well as the dissatisfaction with the resource constraint scenario: “Speak to do, but often without the necessary structure. Then it gets complicated!” (TEACHER 5, 41 years old).

In addition to physical resources, the specific training of PEI professionals is also a differential in the São Paulo network. Because there are many graduates, full undergraduate training in the area in which they teach is much more common, which tends to provide improvements in teaching in the PEI school, but not in the network.

The selection process of the PEI conducts a screening of the teachers, delegating to the PEI units the most qualified professionals. In state public schools in the state of São Paulo, due to the contracting of the time and the emergency register, often professionals without a degree, trained in other areas of knowledge or even students, end up acting as teachers, which has compromised the quality of teaching offered.

However, when entering the PEI school, it was possible to observe that the teachers themselves believe that their training is not enough to perform their assigned functions: “Sometimes there is a lack of training for the mediator. Have the gift, know what to do and how to do so as not to disturb the situation.” (TEACHER 3, 52 years). This highlight to the case of the mediator teacher’s performance is due to the absence of this position in the schools of the PEI. This is a result of the conception that analyzing and resolving conflicts is part of the integral training and work of all teachers.

When analyzing reports about other government programs that propose full-time education in Brazil, the same demand for greater resources and the need for greater training of professionals was observed, as can be observed in the study developed by Ferreira and Rees (2015) in a full-time municipal school in Goiânia.

However, unlike the study by Ferreira and Rees (2015), where it was observed in the teachers’ discourse, there was an indistinction between the proposal of full-time teaching and the concept of integral education. PEI de Votorantim-SP the view that educators play an important role in the student’s personal formation and in the development of their citizenship. Throughout the reports it was possible to also highlight the strong role of planning in the work of the teacher and the perspective of the educator as a researcher, as can be evidenced in the speech: “The function of the teacher is to mediate, establish partnerships, create dialogic relations and be a researcher.” (TEACHER 2, 32 years old).

The conception of teacher as a researcher favors the posture of the teacher as subject of the practice itself. However, as observed in the observations of school functioning and in program regulations, teachers’ actions are aimed more at adapting the norms constructed by others (official curriculum and teacher and student notebooks) to the local reality than promote reflections on the educational system and the PEI with the aim of transforming them.

Regarding teaching practices, the diversification of pedagogical activities was a prominent element in the PEI, as can be seen in the speech:

We have some CDs, there is the internet, textbooks, state handbook, that we use a lot, those resumes. We do a complementation with the internet, a course that we do in the [teaching] board, right ?! (PROFESSOR 1, 51 years old).

According to the reports of the teachers, they use various resources for the preparation and implementation of the classes and the activities to be carried out are previously disclosed to the students through the learning guides and work schedules. What can be highlighted as evident in teachers’ statements is the idea of complementation, local adaptation and changes of strategies for the implementation of the skills and competences proposed by the curriculum. As can be observed in the speech: “We always make adjustments, but without leaving the proposal.” (TEACHER 6, 55 years).

With regard to the intensification of teaching work, one point that can be highlighted in the PEI is the absence of occasional or substitute teachers. This leads, according to the program norms cited above, to compulsory substitution, in which the substitute teacher does not receive any extra for the surplus work: “In this integral teaching system we have no support teacher. One teacher covers the other’s lack. We do not even have any. We do not have it, it’s just the team itself.” (TEACHER 1, 51 years); “The excess of absences leads to decay. As it does not have eventual, when someone is missing, who replaces is the teacher of the same area” (DIRECTOR, 56 years).

This has triggered a scenario of mutual vigilance among teachers, which is typical of a toyotist conception of peer monitoring. In this sense, situations were observed during the observation phase, in which two teachers, unable to remain in school due to health reasons, had to comply with their schedules and teach their classes in the same way, so as not to be poorly evaluated by performance evaluation and do not compromise your colleagues with the extra work.

In the words of one of the interviewees, “Ah, she already knew this was the case when she joined the project!”, There was a latent lack of space for critical questioning and for the transformation of the current norms of the program and its existence.

By attenuating this scenario, there are performance assessments, which are performed with all staff and students at the PEI School. Because a bad evaluation results in the program being cut off, the evaluations create an environment of instability, which has led many PEI professionals (40% of respondents) to continue to accumulate jobs even when they join the program.

This double or triple journey is allowed, since the legislation of the PEI requires full dedication only in the schedule of operation of the program. In this way, many professionals, because they do not know if their salary improvements will be maintained, continue to carry out other activities or teach classes at night. This has triggered a picture of teacher overload.

When reflecting on the PEI, the intensification of teaching work becomes much more evident. Although the teacher works 40 hours per week and receives full-time bonus, the PEI educator performs many other duties than those provided in his initial training. The teacher starts to accumulate tasks directly linked to the management of the school, to the specialized attendance of the students, to the fulfillment of bureaucratic requirements for the formulation of documents, to their own continuing education, among others (MOURA, 2015). This fact was observed in the words of some teachers interviewed, who argue that they end up taking a lot of work to finish at home: “There are many documents to deliver. You’re always doing something” (TEACHER 4, 52).

The workload of the area coordinators teachers was also highlighted in reports such as:

He [area coordinator] works damn! Because it’s not like in other schools that he’s just a coordinator. Here he teaches. So he has his classes and he has to coordinate. So he performs both functions in fact. He solves problems and gives support in the area, and more his classes. (PROFESSOR 1, 51 years old).

Regarding the planning time, the study schedule has enabled the teachers to develop planning activities, development and corrections of the activities within the unit, as well as providing a time for the construction of collective work among teachers and enable socialization between peers. According to the coordinator of the school (44 years):

There is no ATPL [Free Pedagogical Work Class], it’s time for studies. Completely at school! It’s great because everything is lined up here! Everyone is present. All in one school.

During the participant observation, it was possible to experience the intense practice of adapting the official São Paulo curriculum and the proposals present in the teacher’s notebook during study hours. At these pedagogical times, teachers were also observed building interdisciplinary projects and activities for the diverse part of the PEI curriculum. However, what has been observed has not been the stimulus to the exercise of teacher autonomy in an emancipatory sense.

Often the reflections observed were limited to the accomplishment of curricular adaptations or replications of successful practices performed by colleagues. Only during the intervals were isolated situations of questioning the norms of the program but that did not result in any mobilization or effective action to remedy the situation.

The professionals interviewed evaluated the division of the Pedagogical Work Class (ATPC) in ATPCG (general) and ATPCA (by area of knowledge) as positive. Since it has provided more moments of reflection and socialization of the practices developed, which can be evidenced in the following speech:

The ATPC? They are actually two ATPCs. We have an area and a collective. They happen normally, with instructions, with presentations, including with returns to assist in the planning. If there is something that worked, that we see that it really worked, then we introduce ourselves to the team. (PROFESSOR 1, 51 years old).

The collective work of the teachers was also evidenced in the reports about the processes of construction of the school plans. But, it is important to emphasize that there is no direct participation of the students in the construction of these documents, being restricted to the interference of teachers and the management team.

Final considerations

The Integral Education Program has caused changes in the way the São Paulo state public education network operates. The analysis of the case of a school located in the city of Votorantim-SP allowed verifying that the salary gratification and the possibility of forming a working day in a single unit have promoted the adhesion and the interest of the educators of the network in the program.

However, the scenario of intensification of teaching work is evident. The accumulation of functions can compromise the performance of these professionals, especially when these professionals are pressured to perform compulsory substitutions in the event of absence or when they continue to accumulate other positions or functions, due to instability in the program (designated teachers).

Other aggravating factors in this scenario would be: the lack of resources to maintain and promote differentiated practices; the stimulus to the neo-managerialist culture of vigilance and control between the pairs; the lack of specific training to support the new roles to be played by teachers; the scenario of instability generated by the designation of teachers to the program and by the performance evaluations and the fact that reflections and socializations among teachers are limited to adaptations, replications and contextualizations of the curricular proposals.

Despite the improvement discourse, the promotion of the PEI has aggravated the scenario of educational inequality, since these schools work with physical, human and pedagogical resources considered superior to those of other schools, although there is a forecast of expansion of the number of schools that in this type of teaching. The differential salary and the absence of situations conducive to reflection and joint work among the different teachers of the network tend to isolate the teachers from the PEI aggravating the scenario of fragmentation of the teaching category.

In addition to this, the way in which the program has been implemented, since the installation of the PEI in units that already have the physical conditions to carry the program, this new school model does not require, directly, investments in the sector educational. This has also not favored infrastructural improvements in the public network of the State of São Paulo as a whole.

An aggravating factor in this scenario is the alienation of professionals from the problems of the category. The long journey and the intensification of the teaching work occupy the teachers with contextualizations, adaptations and replications of successful practices and does not promote the questioning, the reflection and the transformation of the curriculum, of the own program or of the educational network of São Paulo.

The intensification and routinization of teaching work has remained hidden in the schools of the PEI, through a participation in the choice of methodologies and in the creation of new techniques of teaching and pedagogical performance. Thus, the lack of space for the construction of critical reflections and for the effective participation of teachers in the elaboration of educational policies in São Paulo still remains a challenge for the São Paulo State Secretariat of Education.


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3- According to John Dewey (1979), integral education aims at the full development of the subject, seeking, through the stimulation of his participation throughout the learning process, to enable him to continue his own development process. According to this paradigm, through the promotion of a democratic school, learners would receive stimuli based on reality and, through different experiences, articulate and develop their reflective potential so that they could act in a transformative way in their reality. However, Gadotti (2009) points out that the promotion of integral education is not necessarily linked to the extension of the student’s time in the school unit (full-time school), but to the promotion of activities that seek the development of citizenship and the development of the physical, cognitive, affective and cultural dimensions of the learners.

4- Since 2011, the percentage of the state revenue earmarked to the SEE-SP remained relatively constant (15%), but the percentage of this revenue coming from the state treasury decreased by 5% in the period from 2011 to 2015, indicating an increasing influence of the federal budget in the maintenance of the education offered by the state network of São Paulo. These percentages were obtained through the data provided by the annual program-budget laws available by the official website of the Legislative Assembly of the State of São Paulo (ALESP) (ALESP, 2016).

5- The data presented in this text were obtained during a survey conducted in 2016, approved by the Unicamp Ethics Committee - Presentation Certificate Number for Ethical Appreciation (CAAE): 51326715.9.0000.5404; opinion number: 1404525.

6- In this work, we understand public policies as actions of the State on the organization, structuring and regulation of specific areas of the society and that are the results of a complex historical relation between economic, cultural and political factors. This way, the construction of public policies, whether in the educational area or outside it, can be analyzed as an integrated course of action, resulting from a political process that includes not only the formation of the agenda and the decision-making process, but also the implementation and the evaluation of the policy in question (HÖFLING, 2001; DI GIOVANNI; NOGUEIRA, 2015).

7- According to Carvalho (2015), it should be remembered that the right to education goes beyond the right to schooling; it must include the development and the implementation of social protection policies.

8- According to Michael W. Apple, in his book Ideology and curriculum (2006), the term curriculum refers to everything that occurs in the school environment, including not only the formal curriculum, but also the hidden curriculum (set of values and symbols who are taught inside the school).

9- In the school board of Votorantim-SP, there are frequent reports in schools about the use of illicit substances by students.

10- According to Christopher Ham and Michael Hill (1993), discretion refers to the freedom that public policy implementers hold to interpret the rules and make their own decisions in the course of their activities.

1- We thank the Coordination for the Improvement of Higher Education Personnel (CAPES) for the research funding.

Received: May 21, 2017; Revised: October 25, 2017; Accepted: November 14, 2017

Viviane Cristina Dias holds a master’s degree in education from the State University of Campinas (Unicamp), a licentiate in biological sciences from the Federal University of São Carlos (UFSCar) - Sorocaba campus, and serves as a basic education teacher II in the state public network of São Paulo, in the municipality of Votorantim / SP, Brazil.

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