10 thoughts on “Chilean students fight for free education

  1. Chilean Police Suppressed Student March

    Santiago de Chile, May 28 (Prensa Latina) The military police (Carabineros) suppressed today with water cannon and tear gas hundreds of Chilean students trying to assert their right to march through Alameda Avenue.
    The students would march to demand the government of Sebastian Piñera profound changes in the country’s educational model.

    The demonstration was called by the Coordinating Assembly of Secondary Students and Coordinator of Secondary Students and supported by the university.

    Until this morning the movementâ�Ös leaders and the metropolitan authorities had not agreed on the route of the new manifestation.

    Santiagoâ�Ös city council had refused permission for students to demonstrate through the Alameda Avenue, the main avenue in Santiago, considering that it would alter the normal rhythm of the city.

    Meanwhile, the protesters insisted on doing so by the Alameda, believing that the refusal of the authorities sought to conceal the thrust of the student movement in Chile that took rise in 2011.

    Under Secretary of Education Fernando Rojas criticized the studentsâ�Ö insistence on marching through the Alameda Avenue and said they should accept the route authorized by the authorities.

    “High school students demand to march through the Alameda not because we are capricious or intransigent, but because the Alameda is the emblematic area of social struggles in Chile,” student stressed in a statement.

    Secondary students called for this march after the speech of May 21 when Piñera made the ultimate balance of his administration and in which there were no announcements regarding their demands.

    Among other requirements, students call for “free school pass during all year, improvements in facilitiesâ�Ö infrastructure and schools reconstruction due to the earthquake of February 27, 2010.



  2. President issues eviction warning

    CHILE: President Sebastian Pinera warned protesters occupying dozens of secondary schools on Tuesday that they risk being evicted.

    He said the students may be removed by force to allow the schools’ use as polling stations for June 30 presidential elections.

    Students took over the schools two weeks ago to demand education reform.



  3. Students and trade unions co-operate in nationwide demonstration

    CHILE: Students and trade unions co-operated in a huge nationwide demonstration numbering more than 100,000 protesters demanding education reforms on Wednesday.

    Teachers, dock workers and copper miners joined students in the protest, which was timed to influence Sunday’s presidential primaries.

    Protesters demanded a wider distribution of Chile’s copper wealth and a renationalisation programme for the education system.

    Student leaders also want to change the tax system so the rich pay more.



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  5. CHILEAN President Michelle Bachelet sacked her education minister Nicolas Eyzaguirre on Saturday in response to mass protests by students.

    Mr Eyzaguirre, previously an IMF adviser and right-wing finance minister, was replaced by Adriana Delpiano — linked to former president Ricardo Lagos.

    Despite the change, Ms Bachelet suggested that the government would press on with its educational reforms.

    Tens of thousands of students took to the streets last Thursday to voice their opposition to the plans, which have provoked a indefinite strike by teachers.

    The Bill now being debated would rejig teachers’ salaries and force them to spend more time planning and in meetings — or face the sack.

    The government has pledged to make secondary education free by 2016, but students and teachers say that promises to end private profit in the sector have not been met and have demanded the government sit down for talks.



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