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Students in Chile Protest for Education Reform

Protestas Chile

Demonstrations in Santiago de Chile. Image by Flickr user NOtodoesARTE. CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.

[All links lead to webpages in Spanish.]

The first march for education during the current government of President Michelle Bachelet took place on May 8, 2014, with due prior authorization.

The demonstration counted on the participation of several groups. Among them were Student Confederation of Chile (Confech), National High School Students Assembly (ACES), National High School Students Coordinator (Cones), Movement of Higher Education Students (Mesup), Organization of Private Higher Education Federations (Ofesup) and Association of Ministry of Education Officers (Andime).

The march demanded a free quality education as well as active participation in the reform, which is currently being studied. The newspaper La Tercera reported:

Student march, what is at stake here? President of Feuc says students want “participation in the reform”.

The march was simultaneously carried out in the capital city Santiago and several other locations in the country. Participation and presence of an important number of students was noticed:

Qué bueno ver que la marcha estudiantil fue masiva en #Santiago y regiones. Todos por una nueva educación, que construya un mejor #Chile

— René Naranjo S. (@renenaranjo) May 8, 2014

It's good to see that the student march was massive in Santiago and other regions. United for a new education that builds a better Chile.

Thousands of young people participate in the first student march of the year in Concepción.

There were marches in several cities in the countryside too, as in Iquique, Valparaíso, the city that is the seat of the National Congress, and Valdivia.

Unfortunately, in some places the marches were overshadowed by disturbances, mostly caused by people other than students and who had nothing to do with their demands.

Naschla Aburman, president of Feuc, labeled these disturbances as “isolated incidents” and stated that there are things that are outside of the responsibility of the organizers.

Twitter users expressed their opinion regarding these facts, spreading images and information about the consequences:

AHORA: Intendente @orrego dice que “no hubo ningún incidente” durante marcha estudiantil. Sí “violentistas organizados” al final de ella

— Mauricio Bustamante (@tv_mauricio) May 8, 2014

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