Monday, May 23

They investigate the falsification of academic titles in the public sports education center of Euskadi

The magistrate of Durango Sofía María Sánchez Ortega, head of the Court of Instruction 1 and who was already responsible for the judicial investigation followed after the collapse of the Zaldibar landfill in early 2020, maintains a complex criminal case open for some complaints of falsifications of qualifications and academic records in Kirolene, located in the Biscayan town since 2009 and which is the only public center for higher sports education in the Basque Country. The beneficiary of the alleged irregularities would be the teacher and secretary of the center, Iker López, who signed as an athletics teacher a grade of 9 for himself in each of the subjects leading to obtaining a higher qualification in this discipline. López is a business partner of the director of Kirolene, José Ramón Fernández López.

Euneiz, a catalog University in Vitoria that is not guaranteed to open in September

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The investigated has already appeared in the judicial investigation and, according to the sources consulted, admitted never having studied in Kirolene the higher grade to achieve the title of athletics sports technician and hid behind the fact that his title was approved by the Higher Sports Council (CSD) for previous training. The Coordination area of ​​the state CSD, however, has already made it clear that it denied the validation of the studies requested by López. The documentation in court shows how the minutes show that López “obtained a grade of 9” in all the evaluable blocks but “turning out to be López himself the professor in charge of teaching and, therefore, of the evaluation in said modules”. It is insisted that, if this document is true, he worked “at the same time” as a student, as a teacher and as head of the athletics department, so the rest of the faculty also depended on him. The issuance of the title (between January and August 2016) is prior to the evaluation report (September).

The mess is greater since López had not even studied and obtained the title prior to the superior, essential to qualify for the second. He would be the equivalent of achieving the Baccalaureate without having completed ESO. About a month ago, the reference educational inspector for Kirolene, Jesús Manuel Orúe, who has been summoned as a witness, issued a legal report at the request of the court in which he states that “there is no evidence that López was evaluated […] in sports studies leading to the sports title in athletics” and that “there is no record of the request for the title” in Education. However, the magistrate points out that the Educational Administration had previously explained to the court that she had achieved that level in the 2013/2014 academic year. She highlights the instructor that López’s records came without a signature, “unlike other records of the same nature” that exist in Kirolene.

Thus, the case could acquire another dimension since, until very recently, the Educational Administration, at the request of Kirolene, had sent the court certifications on the studies completed and passed by López, considering them good. In fact, still on April 1, López’s director and partner sent the court some “sheets of notes” with López’s evaluation in 2013/2014 and it is explained that this documentation “has been extracted from the computer application” of Kirolene. However, this report is a week after the aforementioned document from the area inspector, which bears the seal of the Department of Education, in which it is noted that “there is no record” of López’s presence in the course that gives the degree. beginning in athletics. On the other hand, López has been gaining access to positions in Kirolene on a service commission basis thanks to the higher qualifications that he claimed to have. It has been happening at least since the 2017/2018 academic year.

Judo’s precedent

It so happens that this is not the first investigation for a similar reason in Kirolene. This newspaper published that, in 2021, the magistrate Ana Gómez González, head of the Court of Instruction number 3 of Durango, admitted for processing a complaint from the Biscay Prosecutor’s Office regarding possible irregularities in judo teaching. The public prosecutor then acted at the request of an individual who delivered a ‘dossier’ at the end of 2020 in which it was stated that a sports technician module in that specialty was allegedly taught by a panel of “expert” teachers who lacked qualifications. official. Those denounced were the director, Juan Ramón Fernández López, the secretary of the center, López himself, and the educational inspector Jesús Manuel Orúe. Eugenio Jiménez, the director of Centers and Planning of the Department of Education, now with Jokin Bildarratz as adviser and before with Cristina Uriarte, was also mentioned, but he did not take office until 2017, when some of the events under investigation had already occurred.

What did these other facts consist of? Kirolene offered the initial judo cycle in the 2015/2016 academic year and the higher cycle in 2016/2017. However, the complaint reflected that until June 23, 2017, a pool of specialist teachers was not constituted in the Basque Country to teach modules of this sport. In the first cycle there were six teachers and in the second another five, some of them coincident. In the case of the first batch, five of them did not accredit “any official certification of pedagogical and didactic training for the exercise of teaching in special regime sports education”. A sixth did have it, who presented a national diploma from 1988. However, according to the president of the Spanish Judo Federation, Juan Carlos Barcos, that title must necessarily be an “administrative error” since that certificate was not devised until 1999 and was not fully established until 2007.

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