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Educação em Revista

versión impresa ISSN 0102-4698versión On-line ISSN 1982-6621

Educ. rev. vol.37  Belo Horizonte  2021  Epub 30-Jun-2021 






1Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo (SP), Brasil. <>

2 Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo (SP), Brasil. <>

3Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo (SP), Brasil. <>


This paper presents the results of research oriented by the objective of knowing the effects of regulatory discourse on the pedagogical recontextualization of knowledge in the development of official curriculum guidelines. Based on principles of discourse analysis, the permanence and changes expressed in the Common National Curricular Base (BRASIL, 2017) are characterized in relation to the conceptions of teaching and learning that were the basis of previous curriculum proposals in the country, materialized in the National Curricular Parameters (BRASIL, 1997). The analysis is based on the reading and discussion of excerpts from these two documents, focusing on the characterization of roles that seem to be attributed to teachers and students. The results show the repositioning, from one historical context to another, of the roles projected for teachers and students in the teaching and learning processes, so as to disregard the agency and the implication of the subjects of the pedagogical work, reducing the didactic relationship to the appropriation of a pre-established set of knowledge. Although it was not the intention of this study, we understand that this investigation and its results bring contributions to the discussions about the norms that come into force in relation to teacher education and also about the function of the school in the formation of students.

Keywords: Curriculum; Elementary Education; BNCC; Regulatory Discourse


Neste trabalho são apresentados resultados de pesquisa orientada pelo objetivo de conhecer os efeitos do discurso regulador sobre a recontextualização pedagógica de conhecimentos na elaboração de diretrizes curriculares oficiais. Com base em princípios de análise discursiva, caracterizam-se as permanências e mudanças expressas na Base Nacional Comum Curricular (BRASIL, 2017) em relação às concepções de ensino e de aprendizagem que fundamentaram anteriormente propostas curriculares no país, materializadas nos Parâmetros Curriculares Nacionais (BRASIL, 1997). A análise pauta-se na leitura e discussão de trechos destes dois documentos, com foco na caracterização de papéis que parecem ser atribuídos a professores e a estudantes. Os resultados evidenciam o reposicionamento, de um contexto histórico a outro, das funções projetadas para docentes e discentes nos processos de ensino e aprendizagem, de modo a desconsiderar-se a agentividade e a implicação dos sujeitos do trabalho pedagógico, reduzindo-se a relação didática à apropriação de um conjunto pré-estabelecido de conhecimentos. Embora não tenha sido a intenção do presente estudo, entendemos que esta investigação e seus resultados trazem contribuições às discussões sobre as normativas que passam a entrar em vigência em relação à formação de professores e também sobre a função da escola na formação de estudantes.

Palavras-chave: Currículo; Ensino Fundamental; BNCC; Discurso Regulador


Este artículo presenta los resultados de una investigación que tiene como objetivo conocer los efectos del discurso regulatorio en la recontextualización pedagógica del conocimiento. Con base en los principios del análisis discursivo, las permanencias y cambios expresados ​​en la Base Curricular Común Nacional (BRASIL, 2017) se caracterizan en relación a los conceptos de enseñanza y aprendizaje que previamente sustentaban las propuestas curriculares en este país, sistematizadas en los Parámetros Curriculares Nacionales (BRASIL, 1997). El análisis se basa en discutir extractos de estos dos documentos curriculares, centrándose en la caracterización de roles que parecen atribuirse a docentes y estudiantes. Los resultados muestran el reposicionamiento, de un contexto histórico a otro, de las funciones a desempeñar por docentes y estudiantes en los procesos de enseñanza y aprendizaje, con el fin de desconocer su agentividad y implicación en el trabajo pedagógico. La relación didáctica se reduce entonces, en este contexto, a la apropiación de un conjunto de conocimientos preestablecidos. Si bien no fue el propósito de este trabajo, proponemos que esta investigación y sus resultados traigan contribuciones a las discusiones sobre las normas que entran en vigencia en relación a la formación del profesorado y también sobre el papel de la escuela en la formación de los alumnos.

Palabras clave: Currículo; Escuela Básica; Base Curricular Nacional Común; Discurso Regulatorio


In the introduction of the Common National Curricular Base (BNCC), as well as in materials produced for its dissemination and legitimization, it is identified the statement that "the Base is not a curriculum". In the introduction of the document, this idea is reinforced when defining that the BNCC and the curricula complement each other, in order to "adapt [its] propositions [...] to the reality of the systems or education networks and school institutions, considering the context and the characteristics of students" (BRASIL, 2017, p. 16). These adjustments are the focus of the research on which this article is based4. In it, we seek to identify and problematize the choices made by municipal education departments to establish the mandatory alignment with the central curriculum guidelines now in force, according to the perspectives of the professionals of the education networks at the time of composing their curriculum proposals. In this process, there will be marks of some degree of rupture and/or continuity with the previous proposals, which until then guided the school work.

It is understood that, as guidelines of the curriculum being developed in the school systems, the centrally produced documents are an important part of the creation of material and symbolic conditions for the development of school work. It is in this sense that this text focuses on what these documents outline as a teacher model, influencing to some extent the most recent production of curriculum proposals by Brazilian municipalities, as well as the actions for their initial and continuing education.

As an initial movement for the analysis intended in the research, it was considered important to recognize the permanence and changes expressed in the BNCC in relation to what had been guiding the production of curriculum proposals in the country - the National Curriculum Parameters (PCNs). It is considered that this recognition will constitute a support for reflections on the pressures - new or not - that fall on the recontextualizing agents in the development of curriculum proposals.

This perspective is consistent with what Barretto (2000) points out, based on the ideas of Ivor Goodson, when justifying the choice for studying the curriculum prescriptions. For the author, they

reflect [...] an ideology that more broadly permeates society through its institutions and the social forces that animate them, an ideology that goes beyond the particular interpretation, which the segments in power make, of certain educational principles and assumptions. Thus, such orientations constitute, themselves, testimonies that crystallize, through a certain pedagogical version, certain socially shared values. (BARRETTO, 2000, p.7)

Many of the "crystallized testimonies" in the PCNs - and it is risky to say, even in the BNCC -, refer to policies of basic education that share the same matrix, related to broader socio-political and economic changes of the 1990s (BARRETTO, 2012, p. 740), generically called neoliberal. Such marks were object of criticism - when the PCNs were published -, gathered by Sampaio et al (2004 apud GALIAN, 2014) in four fronts, which highlight:

1) its potential to foster the formation of identities very marked by the calls of the neoliberal perspective; 2) the psychologizing bias assumed in the theoretical foundation of curriculum choices, to the detriment of sociological and political aspects of the debate; 3) the excessive detailing of the guidelines; and 4) the insufficiency of cross-cutting themes for the treatment and promotion of criticism in relation to the debates around diversity and cultural plurality. (GALIAN, 2014, p. 653-654. Our emphasis)

Faced with the BNCC, many other criticisms have emerged and their analysis has the potential to enable the identification of permanence and changes from one document to another. As in this article the models of teacher and student are central, it will be on these aspects that we will dwell.

In Galian and Silva (2019), some of the criticisms of the BNCC present in recent scientific productions are gathered in three fronts that focus on:

a) The epistemological debate about knowledge and the refusal to search for a national curriculum; b) The political criticism of the neoliberal and neoconservative directions guiding the BNCC; c) The effects of the definitions contained in the Base on curriculum practices in schools and in the context of teacher training. (GALIAN; SILVA, 2019, p. 526. Our emphasis).

If we take the two bold points in the quotes immediately above - the psychologizing bias assumed in the theoretical foundation of the PCNs, to the detriment of sociological and political aspects, and the concern with the effects of the BNCC definitions on curriculum practices in schools and in teacher training - we approach the theme of this article. The excessive weight of the psychologizing view indicated in criticism of the PCNs was associated with the increasing centrality given to students' learning and knowledge in curriculum development (SAMPAIO et al., 2004). Besides the erasing of the social and political issues involved in the learning processes - which tends to explain difficulties only by the personal characteristics of individuals - the risk of devaluing the content of education on behalf of the relevance of popular cultures and the explanations already built by students in their social groups of origin - that can become at the same time starting point and horizon in the approach to school knowledge - stands out.

On the other hand, the very strict definition of competencies and skills in the BNCC is the target of criticism for the homogenization of curriculum choices of schools and teachers that it tends to foster. Faced with extensive lists of skills to be worked on in a school year - now with legal force, even, no longer presenting themselves only as parameters - it reduces the space for didactic and curricular choices that will enable the creation of learning conditions for all students - in other words, it contributes to obliterate what is specific to the teacher's work, teaching (FRANGELLA, DIAS, 2018; MACIEL et al., 2017).

In this sense, contrasting the goals and modes of implementation of the BNCC, in relation to the goals and modes of implementation of the PCNs, it is observed a hypertrophy in the movements for centralization, unification and imposition of curricula: from one historical moment to another, a network of private agents is constituted, which, with its actions together with public bodies (secretariats, councils) and market agents (media corporations, digital technologies and textbook publishers), works to impose nationally a single curriculum that directs the allocation of public investments for education (CÁSSIO, 2018). In this process, the teaching work and the educational function for students and their cultural, social, and economic specificities are disqualified for their submission to interests outside the school. The verticalization in the modes of social distribution of knowledge, structured in technicist bases (SILVA, 2020), imposes a set of contents and pedagogical practices to replace the teachers' knowledge and the production of knowledge in context, which leads to the devaluation of school cultures, to curriculum homogenization, as mentioned, and the impossibility of interpretation and action - what was presented even minimally as a margin for teacher agency in the PCNs is reduced, in the BNCC, to the application of strategies that ensure the access of those who must learn to the content to be learned.

This article turns to the federal curriculum documents to identify clues as to what has been maintained, accentuated or changed in a more radical way in the discourses about the teacher and the student, about teaching and learning. Additionally, it questions the consequences of these permanence and transformations in the recontextualization that will produce the curriculum proposals by the federal entities and in the formation of identities.

The concept of recontextualization is central to the intended reflection. It deals with the process that takes knowledge in its production field and takes it to compose school knowledge, through the action of different recontextualizing agents (BERNSTEIN, 1996, 2000). The study focuses on one dimension of the recontextualization process that marks the pedagogical discourse by outlining, to some extent, the transformation of the knowledge to be transmitted.

The use of the term curriculum in this study is also inspired by Bernstein's theory, which associates it with "knowledge that is recontextualized from disciplinary fields and codified and organized into school knowledge to be taught" (HOADLEY, 2018, p. 81). For Bernstein, pedagogical discourse is what results from the insertion of instructional discourse, linked to the disciplines, into a base represented by regulatory discourse. The regulatory discourse condenses the different positions present in a specific setting around the advocacy of teacher-centered pedagogies and learner-centered pedagogies, as well as the need for acceptance of existing cultural forms (HOADLEY, 2018, p. 26). In other words, regulatory discourse associates and expresses temporary agreements based on political, social, pedagogical, and psychological considerations present in a given context. In this way, regulatory discourse establishes models of teacher and student, as well as legitimizes certain forms of relationships between them, according to norms established in debates between interests of different orders, from those founded in the educational field to those that find support in broader social, economic, and political interests.

Bernstein's view on curriculum reforms is also relevant to the analysis developed here. For the author, they5:

emerge from the struggle between groups to make their perspectives (and focuses) into state policies and practices. Thus, the perspectives and focuses of this official discourse [materialized in curriculum documents and in actions articulated to them] aim to build in teachers and students a particular moral disposition, a particular motivation and aspiration, expressed in particular practices and performances (BERNSTEIN, 2000, p. 65).

Sharing this point of view, Hoadley (2018) surveyed studies that analyzed curriculum reforms carried out in developing countries between the late 1990s and the first decade of the 2000s, arriving at a set of characteristics that marked the official discourse in all of them - which hold some correlation with what took place in the Brazilian context in the same period. The author indicates:

As a result of persistent poor results [in major assessments], there have been extensive policy debates and reform efforts around curriculum and pedagogy, seen as keys to the quality of education (and, in these developing countries especially, to improving human capital). [...]. In many countries, curricular and methodological changes were proposed, and were generally aimed at promoting learner-centered pedagogy [...]. The intention in almost all cases was to replace a knowledge-centered curriculum. In this neoliberal turn, the curriculum had to become "more transparent and responsive to the needs of employers and learners" (Allais, 2014, p. xvii). The student in these types of curriculums was often represented as a consumer, able to make choices, transfer and accumulate learning. Knowledge was atomized and commodified and choices maximized (HOADLEY, 2018, p. 13-14. Our translation).

Other similar characteristics among the reforms analyzed by these studies consist of: the emphasis on inclusion of values, attitudes, and skills as opposed to the strict knowledge of school subjects; the prevalence of local knowledge and explanations already developed by students, and the movement toward an integrated curriculum (HOADLEY, 2018, p. 14). It is possible to recognize, in this framework drawn by the author, similarities with what begins to be configured as official discourse in the PCNs (BARRETTO, 2012) and that seems to deepen in the BNCC - such as the strength of skills and abilities - including the so-called socioemotional skills -, and the instrumental relationship with knowledge. In this utilitarian process, education does not respond to the formative needs, to the relations with thought, but responds to the objective of qualification valued by the capitalist company, learning to learn, in order to become competent for the solution of circumstantial issues (MANFRÉ, 2020).

It responds, in this sense, to the agendas of global economic interests that seek not only to guide educational processes to the interests of capital, but also to commodify education itself, so that it is managed, both in relation to teaching methods, and in relation to the production and distribution of teaching materials, by for-profit companies (HYPOLITO, 2019). Branco et al (2019) complement this perspective, stating that, with the BNCC's emphasis on methods and procedures to the detriment of the approach to scientific, artistic, and philosophical content, it exposes the possibility of neglecting the critical formation of students and, with it, the emancipation of the citizen.

The homogenization of the curriculum and the standardization of pedagogical practices find their purposes in external evaluations, in target programs, in policies to encourage competition and in the actions of individual accountability of managers, teachers and students, regarding the results of performance and efficiency (SOUSA; ARAGÃO, 2018). It is worth questioning the effect of this deepening on the models of teacher and student fostered by the curriculum documents.

From the methodological point of view, the ongoing research, qualitative in nature, makes use of the document analysis procedure, and has as sources the BNCC and curriculum proposals of three municipalities in the state of São Paulo. The document analysis is developed in two scopes: 1. General - which aims to identify the elements that would characterize the regulatory discourse (BERNSTEIN, 2000), referring to the model of teacher and student, theories of instruction and moral principles assumed in curriculum documents (HOADLEY, 2018) -, and 2. Specific - which focuses on the instructional discourse (BERNSTEIN, 2000), involving the identification of emphases and omissions related to the core content of two curriculum components: Portuguese Language and Natural Sciences. The work in the first scope is what is presented in this article, which analyzes the constitution of the regulatory discourse in the PCNs and the BNCC.

The production of data analysis is based on theoretical and methodological frameworks according to which the discourses are constituted in interdiscursive relations, which include processes of sharing, refusal, denials and denials, based on which competing discourses are reciprocally delimited and establish their modes of operation and their identities (MAINGUENEAU, 2005).

The discourse analyst operates in order to cut out, in a discursive field that comprises several competing discourses, a discursive space that integrates the specific discourses that one seeks to analyze at a given moment and for a given purpose (MAINGUENEAU, 1997; 2005). The analysis of the interdiscursive processes in its linguistic materiality makes it possible to characterize the semantic bases of the observed discourses, showing the values that are attributed in these discourses to themes, objects and concepts, as well as to the subjects that participate in them and their positions.

In the present research, the interdiscursive cut for analysis covers the curricular discourses for basic education produced in federal official spheres, in Brazil, in two specific historical moments, mentioned before. We seek to characterize, through data analysis, the modes of constitution of the regulatory discourse in the observed contexts, contrasting them in terms of political, social, pedagogical and psychological representations that are materialized in each of the discursive processes analyzed, with the models of teacher and student, and the forms of relations between them, which are presented as legitimate, in opposition, explicitly or not, to those that define as unsatisfactory or not relevant.


The different roles assigned to the teacher in the PCNs and the BNCC can be observed in the linguistic and discursive resources used to represent what the teaching work should be according to the regulatory discourse constituted in one socio-historical context and another - the second half of the 1990s, in the case of the former, and the period between 2015 and 2017, in the case of the BNCC (introductory text). Given the character of the documents, in both, the prescriptive tone prevails as to what is defined as the teaching work, but the position occupied by the teacher in relation to his or her work changes substantially from one to the other.

In the PCNs, the teacher occupies a decisive position in the curricular process, in order to establish not only teaching methods (how to teach and evaluate), but also the content to be taught, and its timing (what and when to teach):

The teacher must have clear proposals about what, when and how to teach and evaluate, in order to enable the planning of teaching activities for learning in a way that is appropriate and consistent with its objectives. It is based on these determinations that the teacher prepares the daily classroom schedule and organizes his intervention in order to propose learning situations adjusted to the students' cognitive abilities. In short, it is not the learning that must be adjusted to the teaching, but the teaching that must enhance the learning (BRASIL, 1997, p. 39)

Teaching cannot be limited to the establishment of a homogeneous and identical intervention pattern for all students (BRASIL, 1997, p. 61)

The teacher is represented in the PCNs as one who plans, organizes, intervenes and proposes, in his teaching work, in order to ensure that learning takes place in a satisfactory manner. The teacher's work in this document is positioned as a function of the learning process, and should respond hierarchically to it, affirming that it is up to the teacher to decide how to develop his pedagogical work.

In the BNCC, the teacher is not represented as responsible for decisions about what, when and how to teach, because the pedagogical relationship is not observed as an attribute of the subjects of teaching and learning, but objectified in the content to be distributed: the teacher contextualizes; does not produce, but identifies strategies, to present, represent, exemplify, connect and make meaningful. Thus, the teacher does not participate in curricular decisions and has an instrumental function in school activities:

[It is up to the teacher] to contextualize the contents of the curricular components, identifying strategies to present, represent, exemplify, connect and make them meaningful, based on the reality of the place and time in which learning is situated (BRASIL, 2017, p. 12)

It is thus projected a teaching without a teacher, and learning without subjects who learn: these are also objectified, and arranged in certain times and places, the contexts in which learning is situated, in a simplification movement - as if by linking teaching and learning to the most immediate elements of the context in which one lives, only, one already responds to the need to consider the very unequal conditions in which these processes are developed.

This perspective established in the BNCC is opposed to the way learning is projected in the PCNs, considered an attribute of the subjects who learn according to their particularities, which produces effects on the processes of defining teaching content and its didactic treatment:

The conception of the area highlights the nature of the contents treated, clearly defining the body of knowledge and the object of learning, favoring students to build representations about what they study. This characterization of the area is also important for teachers to be able to situate themselves within a defined and conceptualized set of knowledge that they want their students to learn, a necessary condition for them to proceed with referrals that assist learning successfully (BRASIL, 1997, p. 44)

The definition of contents in the National Curricular Parameters is a sufficiently open reference for technicians and teachers to analyze, reflect and make decisions, resulting in extensions or reductions of certain aspects, according to the learning needs of their students (BRASIL, 1997, p. 54)

The teacher is represented as the one who has the knowledge on the basis of which he organizes and develops his pedagogical practices. Teachers and technicians analyze, reflect and decide. This assignment is emptied in the BNCC, and it is up to the teacher:

Select and apply diversified didactic-pedagogical methodologies and strategies, resorting to differentiated rhythms and complementary content, if necessary, to work with the needs of different groups of students, their families and culture of origin, their communities, their socialization groups etc. [...] Select, produce, apply, and evaluate didactic and technological resources to support the teaching and learning process (BRASIL, 2017, p. 12)

Emphasis is placed on the differences between subjects and cultures, as elements that generate diversified practices, being up to the teacher methodological choices and their application, eventually seeking to select complementary content, if necessary, so there is little room to depart from what is prescribed in the document.

This allows us to understand the conception of content assumed by the BNCC as restricted to the concepts of a particular area, not incorporating the norms and practices, which epistemically constitute a given field, as content to be developed in class.

In the BNCC, this injunction of the subjects of the pedagogical relationship to what is strictly prescribed in the curriculum document, outlined in the teacher model defined in the regulatory discourse, does not emphasize any possibility of creative or productive action by teachers, but also by students: in the passage under analysis, the term "needs" is not pedagogically or didactically qualified, so that it is not clearly associated with teaching or learning actions. The position of the subjects in didactic-pedagogical relations is thus emptied. This emptying produces effects on the meaning of pedagogical work and the roles attributed to the subjects in the construction of these meanings.

The need for meaningful production of the didactic-pedagogical relationship as a teaching attribution is explicitly expressed as a datum of the regulatory discourse materialized in the NCPs:

[The teacher] is responsible for presenting the contents and learning activities in such a way that students understand the why and the wherefore of what they learn, and thus develop positive expectations in relation to learning and feel motivated for school work. To this end, it is necessary to consider that not all people have the same interests or skills, nor learn in the same way, which often requires special attention from the teacher to one or another student, so that all can integrate in the learning process. By recognizing the differences between people, which are the result of the socialization process and individual development, it will be possible to conduct teaching based on learning that serves to further learning" (BRASIL, 1997 p. 48)

In the PCNs, pedagogical practice, by being defined by the learning process, is positioned as a function of the specificities of the students, and thus, a necessary relationship between teacher and student is established for the construction of specific and diversified didactic relations, because particular, circumstantial, specific.

In the BNCC, the motivation and engagement of students depend on the situations put into practice by the teacher without observing the particularities and conditions for the construction of meaning for what is learned: [It is up to the teacher] to design and put into practice situations and procedures to motivate and engage students in learning (BRAZIL, 2017, p. 12). The teacher is responsible for the motivation and engagement of the student in the relationship with school knowledge, in this perspective, but not because he supports him in the construction of meaning for what he learns - in other words, not because he teaches -, but because he seeks, as a technician, innovative and stimulating strategies to comply with what is determined in the prescriptions. This also gives rise to a very specific vision of what is defined as the necessary

review of the initial and continuing education of teachers to align it with the BNCC. National action will be crucial in this initiative, since it is the sphere responsible for regulating higher education, the level at which most of these professionals are trained. Given the evidence on the weight of the teacher in determining student and basic education school performance, this is an indispensable condition for the implementation of the BNCC (BRASIL, 2017, p. 15)

The "alignment" with the BNCC, consistent with the assumed model of teacher, should emphasize the importance of these innovative and stimulating strategies, much more than fostering what is historically recognized in the field of education as crucial to train a teacher: the balance between theoretical and practical aspects of the teaching work. For this model of teacher, the practical aspects of initial and continuing education are certainly much more relevant than the theoretical reflections based on the sciences of education.

The last excerpt of the BNCC, above, highlights the importance of the teacher in determining the performance of the student and the school, but does not consider the construction of meaning for the context of teaching and learning. It is observed, once again, that the exclusion of the teacher from his teaching role is reflected in the exclusion of the student from his learner role: the student is positioned externally to the learning process - he is not represented as the one who learns, but as the one who must engage in learning. In the BNCC, learning is not the action of a subject, but an adverbial adjunct in relation to which a given subject must position himself. By stripping the subjects of the pedagogical relationship of their teaching and learning roles, motivation and engagement are not based on meaningful teaching processes, but on non-specific social and emotional elements.

With regard to the students, we can see that the PCNs already expressed a concern with the formation of the professional that will be necessary in the scenario of accelerated changes in which we live. This is what the following excerpt highlights

It is not enough to aim at the training of students for future qualifications in terms of traditional specializations, but rather it is about having in view the training of students in terms of their qualification for the acquisition and development of new competencies, in function of new knowledge that is produced and demands a new type of professional (BRASIL, 1997, p. 28)

But if the concern with the training of someone who should become the professional for a future of difficult projection remains in the BNCC, something different arises when the document refers to the subject who should develop "the skills that counteract the conception of disinterested and erudite knowledge understood as an end in itself" (BRASIL, 2017, p. 17, our emphasis). It appears, in this excerpt, a position of opposition in relation to what is called "disinterested and erudite knowledge as an end in itself". Even if the notion of competence was already in scene in the PCNs and that it refers to the mobilization of diverse knowledge to solve more immediate problems, it is interesting to recognize that this document did not express the same position in relation to the knowledge of academic or specialized base, centrally linked to the social function of the school: "Brazilian schools, [. ...], need to enable the cultivation of cultural and social goods, considering the expectations and needs of students, parents, community members, teachers, in short, those directly involved in the educational process" (BRASIL, 1997, p. 35).

This is also evident when the PCNs defend the formation of

citizens capable of critically interfering in reality to transform it, [who develop] skills that enable adaptations to the complex conditions and work alternatives that we have today and to deal with the speed in the production and circulation of new knowledge and information, which have been overwhelming and growing (BRASIL, 1997, p. 34)

Although the BNCC refers to the concept of autonomy by emphasizing the ability to make choices based on critical reflections, the idea that everything that is learned in school should "serve" in the lives of students can point to an instrumental relationship with knowledge, little reflective, which would allow, in the limit, to understand that anything that has no use in the "immediate" life of the student, or that does not respond to what the future may demand from them, is useless and not worth the effort to be taught and learned.

Another aspect that deserves to be highlighted in relation to autonomy dialogues directly with characteristics of the teaching work that we perceive are assumed by the BNCC. Assumed in direct relation to the usefulness of the knowledge presented to students, the very idea of autonomy appears problematic, since it disregards the possibility that the knowledge presented is not incorporated into the practices of the subjects.

Furthermore: thought of as an ability that is worked on in class, through the curriculum, autonomy also emerges through the teacher's actions, who, by presenting the practices that epistemically constitute his area of knowledge, allows students to have contact with knowledge as a social practice. But if the teacher, according to the BNCC text, has only the task of selecting methodological resources, perhaps the approach to the content occurs in a traditional way and, therefore, as a private enterprise.

In the excerpts of the PCNs, the character of social construction of knowledge is highlighted, as well as the reconstruction of knowledge that takes place in the teaching and learning process, which have teachers and students interacting as partners in the journey of school development. When addressing these aspects - or, when silent about them - the BNCC chooses to speak of "curricular knowledge contextualized in the local, social and individual reality of the school and its students" (BRASIL, 2017, p. 9), to highlight what the teacher should do (contextualize knowledge). It is about "contextualizing the contents of the curricular components, identifying strategies to present them, represent them, exemplify them, connect them and make them meaningful, based on the reality of the place and time in which the learning is situated" (BRASIL, 2017, p. 12). There is nothing to be done by the student here: the teacher, essentially through the strategies he develops to teach what the document defines as essential learning, is held responsible even for making the content meaningful to his students. The question is: wouldn't it be exactly the teacher's responsibility to try to guarantee the conditions for the students to make what they learn meaningful? What would be the student's responsibility, then? It is important to bring up here, in this respect, what Charlot (2008) states:

One can only learn who develops an intellectual activity to do so and, therefore, no one can learn in the place of the other. Sometimes, when a student does not understand the teacher's explanations, the teacher wishes she could get into his brain to do the work. But she can't: as similar as human beings are, they are also unique and therefore different. It is the student who learns. If he does not want to, by refusing to enter the intellectual activity, he will not learn, whatever the teacher's pedagogical method. (CHARLOT, 2008, p. 23)

The teacher is also responsible, according to the BNCC, to be aware of the diversity of students and their interests and needs: "diversity is inherent to all students, including with regard to the experiences they bring to the school environment and the ways they learn" (BRASIL, 2017, p. 11). Since the responsibility for motivation, interest and even the meaning for what students learn is attributed to the teacher, it seems to leave the student in a very passive position in the relationship with knowledge: he brings his experiences and needs to school, the teacher reads these aspects and finds strategies to ensure the learning defined in the BNCC. Even so, the document talks about student protagonism, although it seems something that is not in line with what is pointed out as an expectation about the teacher's work:

Overcoming the radically disciplinary fragmentation of knowledge, stimulating its application in real life, the student's protagonism in their learning and the importance of context to give meaning to what is learned are some of the principles underlying the BNCC (BRASIL, 2017, p. 17)

Another aspect of continuity between the two documents is the non-centrality of knowledge, secondary in importance when compared to skills (in the PCNs) and competencies (in the BNCC). The excerpts below highlight this:

[The PCNs], [...], adopt as their axis the development of the student's capabilities, a process in which the curricular contents act not as ends in themselves, but as means for the acquisition and development of these capabilities (BRASIL, 1997, p. 33).

[The] curriculums content is at the service of the development of skills (BRASIL, 2017, p. 9)

This is an aspect that has been present in the Brazilian educational scenario for some time, assuming the character of educational objectives that aim to overcome the cognitive objectives, encompassing other aspects of the training of subjects, and reaching the notion of competence, which also displaces the intellectual content from the center of curriculum discussions, on behalf of greater student involvement in their learning processes and greater harmony between the school curriculum and the demands of life in society. Still, it is identified a change in tone of this displacement of knowledge in relation to skills, from the PCNs to the BNCC, in order to reduce knowledge to concepts to be learned, being up to the teacher to implement didactic-pedagogical proposals, but not to dialogue with norms and practices that constitute the epistemic modes of the area they teach. These aspects will be deepened in the continuity of the analyses in the ongoing research.

From the scenario drawn from the excerpts of the PCNs and the BNCC, it is identified as permanence, from the point of view of the regulatory discourse, the recognition of the primacy of learning over teaching, with what this implies of care in relation to the recognition of the differences between students, with regard to their interests and needs. However, if the centrality of learning in the PCNs pointed to a teacher capable of making choices of content and form in order to support the construction of meaning for what is learned and critical participation in the world, in the BNCC this refers to a teacher in search of diversified methodological paths that result in good student performance, in major assessments, it is assumed. He does not "need" to worry about content choices - the BNCC has already done that - he needs to find a way to improve his performance and that of his students.

It is interesting to reflect on this permanence, and especially on the "erasing" of the figure of the teacher in the BNCC, in view of the developments of the homologation of this document in subsequent regulations, as well as in the analyses in the academic field.

Thus, in December 2019, the National Education Council instituted Resolution CNE/CP No. 2, which defines the National Curricular Guidelines for the Initial Training of Teachers for Basic Education and institutes the Common National Base for the Initial Training of Teachers of Basic Education (BNC-Training). In this Resolution No. 2 of 2019 it is assumed, in its articles 2 and 3, that:

Article 2 The teacher training presupposes the development, by the undergraduate, of the general competencies foreseen in the BNCC-Basic Education, as well as the essential learning to be guaranteed to students, regarding the intellectual, physical, cultural, social and emotional aspects of their training, having as perspective the full development of people, aiming at Comprehensive Education

Art. 3 Based on the same principles of the generic competences established by the BNCC, the graduate is required to develop the corresponding teaching generic competences. Sole paragraph. The generic teaching competencies, as well as the specific competencies and the skills corresponding to them, indicated in the Annex that is part of this Resolution, make up the BNC-Training.

These articles indicate that the initial training of teachers who will work in basic education must assume as educational goals what the BNCC establishes for the training of students, naming them as "general teaching competencies" - which in practice means a small adjustment of terms, keeping essentially the same general competencies of the BNCC. In other words, the process of becoming competent as a teacher is associated with the process of becoming competent as a student - which suggests that the teacher's example will be mirrored by the student and makes it quite unspecific what the set of teaching knowledge mobilized in pedagogical practice is. From this perspective, a teacher who "complies" strictly with the BNCC as essential learning is the model that is sought.

We also call attention to the fact that we do not discuss the provisional nature that, in our understanding, marks any curriculum prescription, by its very transitory nature. By linking teacher training to the dictates of the BNCC, the perpetuity of the document is assumed. And, more than that, it assumes a supposed infallibility of the document in the face of present and future social and historical contexts.

When detailing the structure of undergraduate courses, Resolution No. 2 of 2019 establishes, in Article 11, the following:

Art. 11. The referred workload of the undergraduate courses must have the following distribution:

I - Group I: 800 (eight hundred) hours, for the common base that comprises the scientific, educational and pedagogical knowledge and grounds for education and its articulations with the systems, schools and educational practices.

II - Group II: 1,600 (one thousand and six hundred) hours for learning the specific content of the areas, components, thematic units, and objects of knowledge of the BNCC, and for the pedagogical mastery of this content.

III - Group III: 800 (eight hundred) hours, pedagogical practice, distributed as follows

(a) 400 (four hundred) hours for supervised internship, in a real work situation in school, according to the Pedagogical Project of the Course (PPC) of the training institution; and (b) 400 (four hundred) hours for the practice of the curricular components of Groups I and II, distributed throughout the course, since its beginning, according to the PPC of the training institution.

In this distribution of course workload, it should be noted that Group II concentrates twice as many hours as the other two, which are precisely the hours set aside for the study of the BNCC, as well as for the development of the "pedagogical domain" of its contents. The centrality assumed in the BNC-Training for Group II, among other aspects, makes explicit the model of teacher desired by the current educational policy: a professional who knows the legal definitions of the BNCC and is ready to develop innovative methodologies capable of mobilizing the students' interest and even of giving meaning to what they learn.

In counterpoint to this perspective, Leite et al. (2018) refer to the Resolution CNE/CP No. 2 of 2015, which defines the National Curricular Guidelines for initial training at higher education level (degree courses, pedagogical training courses for graduates and second-degree courses) and for continuing education. The authors state that this Resolution emphasizes the complexity of the teaching work, calling into question the idea that obedience to legal definitions would be enough to develop a quality school work:

the teaching process, as well as the educational action implicit in the exercise of the teacher's profession, is not restricted to a homogeneous group of students organized in a single level of education, after all, the teacher is trained to work in basic education at different levels, which have distinct specificities. Moreover, it has to be considered that, even in classes of the same categorization, there are students with different life experiences and, therefore, with different knowledge that must be considered in the teaching-learning process. Other particularities and specificities still need to be valued, such as the fact that there are students with disabilities and that, therefore, also need a service according to their cognitive and physical demands. (LEITE et al., 2018, p.727)

It is important to highlight that, although there is not even enough time yet to assess how much Resolution No. 2 of 2015 brought significant changes to the undergraduate courses, Resolution CNE/CP No. 2 of 2019 operates an abrupt backward movement in teacher education policies in Brazil, as already stated in the academic field (RODRIGUES, PEREIRA, & MOHR, 2020; GUEDES, 2019; TAFFAREL, 2020).

Fuza and Miranda (2020) also refer to the articulation of the BNCC with teacher training policies. They point out that, in the initial implementation periods of the BNCC, the review of initial and continuing teacher education is an essential task to be undertaken by the Union. Mobilizing diverse research, the authors point out that discussions about the BNCC are related to issues of power involved in decisions about training and teacher identity, and find that the document proposes the training of specific models of students and teachers. According to Szundy (2017, p. 85, apud Fuza and Miranda, 2000), they further point out that the BNCC:

proposes to encompass the formation of the student and the teacher as acting subjects in their contexts. The existence of the BNCC is no guarantee that its assumptions will actually be effective in school, because, in addition to it, there must be the teacher, "a central player for the maintenance and / or transformation of curricula. Therefore,] the launching of any curricular guidelines ends up bringing positions about the formation of teachers to the core of the discussions". (FUZA AND MIRANDA, 2000, p. 5)

Selles (2018) considers that the teacher image outlined in the BNCC contributes to the precariousness of their work, by conferring what she calls "a certificate of incompetence to teachers" regarding the management of their own work. The author identifies a silencing of the teacher as the author of his practice in the BNCC, which is aggravated by the direct association that the document makes between quality of education and pass rates on major exams, fostering the achievement of goals and the establishment of rankings. He also emphasizes that this is a more elaborate way to control the work of teachers, who associate their own success and that of their students with their performance in standardized evaluation systems, as if this could configure a certification system.

Added to these factors, Selles, already in 2018, recognized in the contemporary Brazilian educational scenario at least two privatist fronts that tension and interfere in reforming actions. The first of them, with a strong market base, presents a consensus on the precariousness of facilities and supplies in public schools and seeks to produce and sell "solutions" to such problems, including materials and training processes that seek to increase evaluation results. The second front, with a neoconservative bias, pressures the State to intervene in teachers' work, claiming that certain moral and religious values, of a private nature, should be assumed as the wishes of all. Although these are fronts with distinct interests and ideological bases, the author emphasizes the need to understand them as privatist interests articulated to control the production of curricula and teacher training and that are aimed at all levels of training, from basic education to higher education (SELLES, 2018).


Finally, we resume what was preliminarily identified in this article as a deepening of the type of relationship assumed with knowledge in school since the PCNs, having the teacher as the central mediator figure, in dialogue with students. In this sense, it is worth bringing the position stated by Charlot (2008), who invites us to reflect on the risks of secondary school knowledge in face of the development of competencies and the primacy of students' experience:

School is a place that requires a form of distancing towards everyday experience. What in the latter is an experienced and contextualized situation, an object of the environment, becomes, at school, the object of thought, of discourse, of text. Furthermore, school speaks to students about objects that are not found in their everyday world, and sometimes not in any sensible world, and takes them to universes that only exist in thought and language. Thus, the school is fundamentally a space of words that make it possible to objectify the world and distance oneself from it, and that open windows to other spaces and times, to the imaginary and the ideal. Moreover, school is a place where language itself becomes an object of language, a second level: in school, one speaks about speech. (CHARLOT, 2008, p. 30)

If assumed the function of the school presented by Charlot, it remains to discuss, therefore, the roles to be developed, in articulation and partnership, by teachers and students in the (re)construction of knowledge operated in the curricular process, considering there the force that will have the current curricular policies on the organization of schools and the work of teachers and students.

In a still preliminary way, we conclude that, from the PCNs to the BNCC, a repositioning of the models of teacher and student projected in curriculum reference documents is operated, in order to disassociate from their functions in the pedagogical process the two subjects that constitute themselves in the didactic relationship: who teaches and who learns. In this sense, from one document to another, not only the teacher's agency in pedagogical work, provided for in the PCNs, is suppressed in the BNCC, but the very work of teaching is represented as a process independent of a subject that produces it, and this already reveals changes in the initial and continuing teacher training policy for basic education, for example. The disassociation between teaching and teaching work has its counterpart in the documents under analysis, in the relationship between student and learning, so that the latter is also represented in the BNCC as a process independent of the subject that learns.

If in the discussion of the findings of this study, the BNC-Training has already been mentioned, evidencing its connection to the BNCC, the Opinion CNE/CP 14/2020, which establishes the National Curriculum Guidelines for the Continuing Training of Basic Education Teachers and the Common National Base for the Continuing Training of Basic Education Teachers (BNC-Continuing Training), reaffirms this feature. In this Opinion, it states that:

the BNCC demands that the teacher master, in addition to the specific knowledge of the different areas, active and contextualized pedagogies that facilitate the learning of curricular content in situations favorable to the development of socio emotional skills, integral development and the students' life project.

In this statement, it is underlined what is expected from the teacher - that he or she masters the specific knowledge of the areas, which refers especially to the mastery of the prescriptions expressed in the BNCC, and, above all, that he or she is able to develop active and contextualized methodologies that favor learning. The following excerpt from the same document reinforces this idea, when it states that

to ensure that programs aimed at teacher training result in improved professional practice, it is necessary that they are based not only on specific content of the school curriculum, but also on how to teach this content in its context, enabling the teacher to learn to develop varied strategies to achieve this end.

On the other hand, when dealing with the students, the aforementioned Parecer places as a formative horizon the development of socioemotional competencies, the integral development - a widely defended perspective that emphasizes the importance of an education that goes beyond the cognitive dimension, which often results in practices that deny the work with component knowledge, in the name of "innovative" initiatives - and their life projects. The importance of the relationships with school knowledge and the necessary engagement of students with their learning processes is diluted in this design. On the teacher's part, his or her relationship with the specific knowledge of the curricular components is restricted to what is defined in the BNCC, the central object of his or her studies, both in initial and continuing education, according to the most recent educational policies.

Of course, we are not considering that the models of teacher and student defined in the regulatory discourse operate as factors that will determine the positioning taken by these subjects in the exercise of their work. What we are pointing out is that these discursive paths are opening the way for the production of other policies - such as initial and continuing teacher training or the production and distribution of teaching materials - that have the potential to create material and symbolic conditions very unfavorable for the development of quality education in Brazilian schools.


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4This research is financed by Fapesp (Regular Grant nº 01329-2).

5Many researches about curriculum and curriculum reforms have been developed in several countries, and also in Brazil, taking as their main theoretical reference the writings of Basil Bernstein. Among them, we highlight: Neves and Morais (2010), Morais, Neves and Ferreira (2019), Hoadley (2018), Weelahan (2010), in the international scope, and Sampaio (1998), Mainardes and Stremel (2010), Coelho (2017) and Galian and Stefenon (2018), in the Brazilian context, among many others.

The translation of this article into English was funded by the Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado de Minas Gerais - FAPEMIG - through the program of supporting the publication of institutional scientific journals.

Received: September 28, 2020; Accepted: January 25, 2021

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