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Teachers, students march in Chile against education bill
By IANS | Bharat Defence Kavach | Publish Date: 6/4/2015 12:00:00 AM

Santiago: Tens of thousands of people took part in rallies organised by the country s largest teachers union to protest against an education bill, media reported on Thursday. University and high-school student federations joined demonstrations in Santiago and other cities to express support for the educators demands, Efe news agency reported.

The biggest rally took place in the Chilean capital, where more than 700,00 people, according to protest organisers, marched in downtown Santiago. Last week, student protesters blocked traffic and clashed with police on that road. At the end of the demonstration, isolated groups of hooded youths vandalised street furniture before riot police dispersed them with water cannon.

Teachers are demanding changes to an education bill currently before Congress, saying it should be modified to shorten their working hours, pay them higher salaries and eliminate a requirement that teachers new to the profession pass exams in different knowledge areas.

"The government needs to understand it needs to sit down and talk and substantially improve this bill," Jaime Gajardo, the head of the CPU teachers union, Chile s largest, said. The government, for its part, says teachers are being too inflexible in their demands.

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Teachers, students march in Chile against education bill

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