Education protests grip Chilean capital

Education protests grip Chilean capital

Students in Chile have erected burning barricades in at least 10 locations throughout Santiago, as part of a protest to demand free higher education.

Tuesday’s demonstration in the South American nation’s capital is the latest phase in a student movement that began in May…

Calling for massive protest marches in the business district of Santiago, the students rejected further talks with the government, who they said had not met their demands of free public university education.

Currently, only 40 per cent of Chilean students qualify for free education based on their parents’ income.

The relaunched protest movement is the biggest the nation has seen since previous negotations for sweeping educational reform in 1990 with the then president, Augusto Pinochet, broke down.

Calling for two days of protest, the Chilean Students Confederation along with 70 other organisations, including the nation’s largest labour confederation and a teachers’ organisation, aim to coincide their calls for educational reform with the larger youth-led Occupy Wall Street movement that has spread globally.

The movement has already delayed classes throughout Santiago for months, with demonstrations continuing to draw tens of thousands of students into the streets.

Source: Al Jazeera