Here is an attempt to list most of the protests related to "neoliberal reforms" within public education systems around the world. Hundreds of actions in 52 countries on 5 continents were recorded.
The following list is also available as a .pdf - ready to be printed and displayed :)
The roots of the problems are everywhere the same. This is one struggle. This is our struggle! Time to unite - worldwide.
Consider to use the "International Student Movement" [ISM] to exchange information, network and co-ordinate actions globally.
Groups and activists on the "ISM" decided to call for a "Global Wave of Action for Education" [Oct./Nov. 2010]. Discuss this within your local groups and let's co-ordinate this together.
Please help to complete the list below! Leave a comment or drop a line at: united.for.education[at]gmail.com
~ one world - one struggle ~
Orléans, France: Highschool students protest against the reform of the minister for education.
Nashville, U.S. of A.: Students at Tennessee Board of Regents schools are protesting planned cuts in higher education. About 250 students met at the Tennessee State University campus in downtown Nashville and marched to Legislative Plaza, where they held a rally.
Port Alberni, Canada: Students handed out free soup to protest the financial woes of the post-secondary education system. The North Island College event was one of several taking place across Canada this week – leading up to Jan. 21, when the amount of student loans owed to the Government of Canada will surpass $13 billion.
Burlington, U.S. of A.: Dozens of students and faculty members from the University of Vermont in Burlington filed out of the Davis center armed with signs, instruments, and a large black coffin bearing the words "UVM education."
Phoenix, U.S. of A.: More than 1,000 teachers, students and parents rallied at the state Capitol Sunday in opposition to proposed budget cuts to education.
Toronto, Canada: More than 3,300 union members including teaching assistants, contract faculty and graduate assistants have been on strike since Nov. 6 2008.
About 200 members of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) Local 3903 gathered at the Ontario Ministry of Labour office near University Avenue and Dundas Street where the rally began.
The peaceful protest was attacked by police forces. One person was injured and four people arrested.
Lahore, Parkistan: Hundreds of students protested against hikes in tuition fees and called for a day of strike.
Short video (in bad quality): youtube.com
Phoenix, U.S. of A.: Nearly 5,000 students from the 3 Arizona universities and several elementary and high schools descended upon the Arizona state legislature today to protest the massive budget cuts that are being proposed as a way of eliminating the state’s budget deficit.
Bulawayo, Zimbabwe: Students at the National University of Science and Technology (NUST) protested peacefully against the “dollarization” of education in the country. Thousands of students gathered in Delta lecture theatre (Freedom Hall) at a general meeting organised by the Student Representative Council to discuss the new fee structure pegged in foreign currency.
Students resolved not to pay fees in foreign currency and demanded they pay affordable fees in local currency. After the general meeting the students marched around the campus holding placards and singing revolutionary songs denouncing the “dollarization” of education in Zimbabwe.
Fort Pierce, U.S. of A.: State cuts to education brought thousands in St. Lucie County to rally in protest. People in St. Lucie are fighting back against massive state budget cuts to education. More than 3,000 children, parents, teachers and concerned community members rallied at the school district headquarters. They said they're not stopping until legislators get the message that education should not be compromised.
02 - 07/02
Bujumbura, Burundi: Burundian youth, students and pupils in higher colleges took part in a week of action in the city of Bujumbura. It was joined by close to 700 students from various universities, schools and higher colleges. During the opening ceremony at the University of Burundi students organised visits and “walk and talk” sessions around schools. "Reclaiming free access to education for all", with a particular attention to secondary and university levels, was the main theme of the week of action.
Youth in higher schools and universities raised their voice saying: ”MUGUTSIMBATAZA UBUMENYI, ABATEGETSI BARAKWIYE KWAMA BATWIBUKA” ("Strengthen knowledge; country leaders have to remember us!").
"Volunteer students raised books to equip the modern library "Human Award Universal School" (HAUS) in Burundi. We call for worldwide contributions to ship this container together as a way to enable emmancipating education through "Reading and Services in Libraries" in Burundi, Africa. Click here for details.
If we achieve this goal we will write it in "International Emancipation Agenda" as an achieved scope for Higher Education Liberalised in Burundi."
Dubai, United Arab Emirates: Parents of pupils at Dubai Modern High School held a silent protest outside the school against a fee increase which could see fees rise by 100 percent.
Gems Education, the owner of the school which owns more than 26 schools across the emirates, warned parents that such protests went "against the ehtos and culture of the school community, as well as the laws of the UAE."
The demonstration was the second in a week. On Thursday (29/01) between 200 and 300 parents held a demonstration as well.
Talks between Gems Education and the Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA) are taking place to determine whether or not plans to increase fees by 110 percent is reasonable.
Under the proposed increase Grade 1 pupil's fees would increase from 15,950 dirhams ($4,340) for the current academic year, to 33,520 dirhams ($9,130) for the 2010/2011 academic year.
Harare, Zimbabwe: The University of Zimbabwe was officially closed following a series of demonstrations by students and teachers about university fees and salaries. Seventy five students were reportedly arrested during the "National Campaign against Dollarization in Zimbabwe". The demonstrations leading to the University closure followed a government decision to collect school fees in US dollars. This has left students facing extortionate fees of $1,800 a semester and as a result the university fears a high drop-out rate.
The Zimbabwe National Students Union (ZINASU) claim that security guards and riot police officers came down hard on the demonstrators, resulting in various arrests, injuries and eventually the closing of the University.
Burnaby, Canada: Many classes sat empty during lunch hour at Simon Fraser University today. Students and faculty made a lunch date to join together in protest of provincial funding cuts implemented last year by the British Columbia government lead by Premier Gordon Campbell.
The protest has received the support of the University’s senate which passed an academic amnesty motion in January encouraging faculty to accommodate students planning to attend the protest.
Bielefeld, Germany: Hundreds of students protested against tuition fees.
Dublin, Ireland: The protest was described as a student army, a mass of humanity taking to the streets for the second time in just a few months.
Up to 15,000 or so carried the usual banners, some serious, some amusing, some downright cheeky. No matter the wording, there was no doubt the message boiled down to the same thing: no fees.
(For many months students, parents and teachers have held massive protests against the re-introduction of tuition fees.)
Freiburg, Germany: The rector’s office of the Teacher training College was being spontaneously occupied after a general assembly for 24 hours. With this action students wanted to express their protest against tuition fees. The occupation ended after the rector promised to drop the reminder charges (which was also one of the demands).
Paris and many more cities, France: Students, teachers, professors and parents protested today against proposed education reforms across the country. The reforms would give universities more “autonomy” and encourage competition among institutions. Tens of thousand took to the streets on that day.
Video report by Al Jazeera: youtube.com
Alice, South Africa: The lectures on campus of Fort Hare University were disrupted when students spontaneously decided to protest against the increase in registration fees and accommodation costs.
New Delhi, India: About 2,000 Students demonstrated for better conditions on campus of the Jawaharlal Nehru University. A strike lasting for two days was announced for next week.
Tennessee, U.S. of A.: College students across Tennessee expressed their objection budget cuts and having to pay even more out of their pocket, which undermines important efforts to increase access and make higher education more affordable in the state.
Roskilde, Denmark: Students at the University of Roskilde erected barricades and blocked the entrance to the administration building to protest against budget cuts. Academic institutions across Denmark are effected by the cuts, but students in Roskilde kicked off the protests.
Minneapolis, U.S. of A.: University of Minnesota students gathered outside of Williamson Hall, the first day tuition was due, to protest budget cuts and tuition hikes that will likely be a result of the state’s budget deficit.
Protesters had signs that said “Education is a Right” and “Bail out Universities, not Wall Street.”
New York, U.S. of A.: The three-day long sit-in at a university cafeteria ended Friday afternoon. About 20 members of a student group Take Back NYU had been holed up in the cafeteria of the Kimmel Student Center since Wednesday night.
"The primary agenda of anyone who's out here is to democratize NYU, increase student involvement in the way the university is run, give the students a real voice and ensure that NYU conducts itself in a way that is consistent with the values and beliefs of its student body," said Colin Dillon, NYU alumni member.
Dozens agitated in front of the student center for hours, clamoring about everything from university expenses to Palestine to giving the public access to the campus library.
New Delhi, India: Students of the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) here continued their strike for the third day Wednesday demanding withdrawal of the proposed fee hike and implementation of reservation policies in admissions.
Dublin, Ireland: Up to 120,000 people protested for a world based on solidarity and against the re-introduction of tuition fees in public universities.
London, England (UK): Up to 800 students came together in a demonstration for free education in central London.
For more details: anothereducationispossible.org.uk
Austin, U.S. of A.: Students from across Texas made the mile-long march from the West Mall to the south steps of the Capitol to promote tuition relief and equal opportunity for higher education.
Manila, Philippines: Hundreds of students protested in the streets of Manila against the commercialisation of education and the hikes of tuition fees.
Manila, Philippines: Dozens of students staged a naked protest against hikes in tuition fees.
New York, U.S. of A.: Thousands of people, including NYU students, rallied outside City Hall to protest Gov. David Paterson’s proposal to cut funding for higher education and health care. In November, Paterson announced his plan to cut the Aid to Certain Independent Colleges and Universities by $2 million and increase tuition for state-funded universities.
Orlando, U.S. of A.: More than 6,000 teachers, parents and students gathered Saturday at the University of Central Florida Arena to rally against budget cuts for education and for making education a priority.
Liverpool, England (UK): After the cuts of dozens of study courses (especially among social sciences) at the John Moores University were announced about 500 students staged a protest in the city center.
San Francisco, U.S. of A.: Hundreds of students walked-out in protest against budget cuts in California.
Barcelona, Catalonia/Spain: About 12,000 people came together during a demonstration against the Bolonga process. Right afterwards the University of Pompeu Fabra was spontaneously occupied by a crowd of more than 2,000 students.
For more details: emancipating-education-for-all.org
Helsinki und other cities, Finland: Students across the country protested against a new law, which is suppose to grant universities more „autonomy“ and make it easier for institutions to introduce tuition fees. A building of the University of Helsinki was occupied.
Pomona, U.S. of A.: About 1,000 teachers, parents and students rallied and called on state officials to spare education as they try to resolve the state's financial problems.
Across the state people held other rallies in support of education on what was called Pink Friday protesting thousands of layoff notices sent to teachers statewide.
Sacramento, U. S. of A.: Thousands of students and teachers gathered outside of the state Capitol in Sacramento to protest state cuts in education funding.
On the same day hundreds of students walked out of class and onto the streets of downtown Los Angeles to protest education cuts and teacher layoffs.
Reading, England (UK): Reading University students took part in a protest against proposals to increase top-up fees.
This week, a BBC survey revealed two thirds of vice chancellors want to see top-up fees rise to between £4,000 and £20,000 in order to meet growing costs.
Tallahassee, U.S. of A.: Up to 2,000 parents, teachers, students and school administrators gathered on the steps of the Capitol to warn lawmakers not to cut education funding.
18 – 19/03
Barcelona, Catalonia/Spain: In protest against the Bologna process students occupied the central building of the University of Barcelona. The occupied space served as a platform to co-ordinate and mobilize for protests locally and internationally. After 118 days of occupation the building was violently evicted by riot police on March 18 at 5am. Students spontaneously gathered in front of the building and blocked the street. A few minutes later they too were attacked by special police forces. Within the next 24 hours students were protesting across the city and beyond. More than 100 students and dozens of journalists were injured due to police attacks.
On March 19 teachers, parents, students, pupils and workers joined a demonstration counting 50,000 participants in the city center demanding different education policies.
At the same time 8,000 people were protesting against the police violence and expressed their solidarity with the victims.
For more details: emancipating-education-for-all.org
Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam: In a country where students rarely protest anything, officials of Hong Bang University, in Ho Chi Minh City, have decided to cancel a tuition increase after hundreds of protesters took to the streets.
The demonstrators created traffic jams as they waved signs and shouted slogans protesting the sudden increase, which would have raised this semester’s tuition by US$29. The protest caught the attention of administrators, who later that day cancelled the increase and let the fee remain at US$162. The officials said they realized the added cost would hit families hard, especially as Vietnam’s economy is suffering from a decline in export orders and unemployment is sharply rising.
Gdańsk, Poland: A group of activists calling itself „Open Commitee for Liberation of the Educational Space (OKUPE)“ staged a Zombie - “Flesh-mob” with dozens of students involved on the university campus. It was meant to spread awareness regarding the increasing commercialisation of education and criticize how students are turning into “programmed zombies”. The university is NO factory producing human capital for the labour market!
Boston, U.S. of A.: Many parents are concerned about funding for public education. With the grassroots group "Stand for Children" hundreds of parents, teachers and public education advocates descended on the State House to lobby lawmakers for more money for education.
The group delivered 7,252 postcards to lawmakers from Massachusetts citizens who want legislators and the govenor to know layoffs for teachers and school closings are not options.
The protesters at the State House were angry that teachers are being laid off, programs are being eliminated and schools are closed.
Perth, Australia: One hundred students rallied on March 25 outside Perth’s Wesley church to call on the Rudd government to give fair income support for university students, to end voluntary student unionism and to stop the planned deregulation of university funding.
Cardiff, Wales: More than 300 lecturers and students staged a placard-waving protest at the Welsh Assembly over the impact of planned cuts in funding for further education colleges.
Cheney, U.S. of A. : About 300 Eastern Washington University students and faculty turned out for a rally in Cheney to protest education budget cuts being considered by the state Legislature.
Santiago, Chile: Around 3,000 students, teachers and supporters took to the streets to protest Article 46 of Chile's newly passed General Education Law (LGE). 47 were arrested, including three teachers, while five police officers were injured.
If passed Article 46 would allow professionals with eight semesters of experience in their field - but without full teaching training - to be eligible to teach in schools.
Riga, Latvia: Over 10,000 teachers blocked the streets of Riga to protest against government plans to cut funds for education and slash public-sector wages by up to 40 per cent. Teachers from all over the country gathered for the rally, which was led by Latvian Education and Science Workers Association chairwoman Astrida Harbacevica. Protesters brandished signs reading: "More financing for education and science!" and "Send the ministers to school."
The new government is under pressure to rein in spending to meet budget requirements for a 7.5 billion euros ($10bn) bail-out from the International Monetary Fund and other lenders.
Sacramento, U.S. of A.: Teachers, students and parents protested in front of the Mark Hopkins elementary school, one of the schools (out of five) threatened to be shut down due to budget problems.
Glasgow, Scotland (UK): Parents of children at two closure-threatened primary schools have occupied the buildings and are refusing to leave.
The schools are among 13 primaries and 12 nurseries the city council is proposing to close or merge. The proposals have provoked widespread anger from some parents and community groups who believe they will have a negative impact on pupils' education. Several marches and demonstrations have been held outside the City Chambers and at the schools involved by groups worried about the closure plan.
Dhaka, Bangladesh: Several hundred students of Home Economics College staged a sit-in halting traffic on the Azimpur- New Market road for about five hours on Sunday in protest against college authority’s decision to increase readmission fees.
Dhaka, Bangladesh: The students of Home Economics College boycotted their classes and examinations protesting the increase of re-admission fees and demanding a separate faculty under Dhaka University.
Angry students demonstrated on campus in the morning. They also threatened to go for tougher movement if the college authorities failed to meet their demands immediately.
Vermont, U.S. of A.: Up to 1,000 students and professors staged a walkout and protested on campus against budget cuts, increasing fees and cuts in faculty staff at the University of Vermont (UVM).
Video: Burlington Free Press
Seoul, S.Korea: In the morning dozens of students from around S.Korea descended on the Presidential Palace (Cheong Wa Dae) in central Seoul to demand from the government to reduce university tuition fees by half and address unemployment problems facing graduates. Twenty students, including student leaders from Busan National University, Joong-ang University, Hongik University, among others, had their heads shaved in a traditional action of protest.
Police were on hand to break up the demonstration, which was organized by the Korea University Students' Union. Scuffels ensued and 49 students were detained - 46 male and 3 female students.
New York, U.S. of A.: About 60 students re-occupied a building of the New School University protesting against budget issues and for the resignation of the president Bob Kerry. A few hours later police stormed the building with pepper spray and tear gas arresting 19 students inside the building and three outside gathering in support. All involved students are threatened to be suspended by the university.
Dublin, Ireland: Students staged a protest outside the Department of Finance at the planned reintroduction of college fees and the education cutbacks announced in the next budget.
FEE (Free Education for Everyone) groups in NUI Maynooth and in UCD joined forces and occupied the Department of Finance in Dublin city centre. They occupied the main stairwell in the department for two and a half hours, forcing the shutdown of the building in that time-frame.
There was a strong garda (police) force, but there were no arrests. Activists made clear arguements against the privatisation of education, and in solidarity with workers after the announcement of the harsh budget a few weeks before hand.
The struggle continues!
Leipzig, Germany: Students started a two day protest in the faculty of social sciences at the University of Leipzig. During this constructive protest several hundred students were discussing the grievances of the German university (and especially the University of Leipzig) like the realization of the Bologna process, the introduction of tuition
fees, the school-like curriculum or the economization of universities, on the one hand. On the other hand, they focused on education in general and the role of universities within society and stated that those problems can’t be discussed without reference to the social system as a whole.
After two days of an intensive dicourse (workshops, panel discussions, speeches etc.) the students decides to move to another university building in the city centre, where they have squatted 5 rooms for 19 days now.
Being aware of the complexity of the issues and the necessity of a deeper reflection on the overall context the students’ aim is to use time and space in order to discuss, analyze and systematize their critique. This is and will be done in workshops and plenary meetings.
The students will occupy that part of the university as long as they have to in order to pay attention to the conditions which are unworthy for a university. By joining the European protest they’ll try to sensibilize their fellow
students in Germany, Europe and worldwide and increase the pressure on the rector’s office and the ministries.
Zagreb, Croatia: During the "Reclaim your Education - Global Week of Action" the independent student initiative for the right to free education occupied the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences. They demand the elimination of all types of fees that have been introduced on higher education at all levels.
20 - 29/04
Croatia, Germany, France, the UK, Catalunya/Spain, Bangladesh, the U.S. of A., Morocco, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Luxemburg, Russia, Austria and Australia: Protests and Events as part of the "Reclaim your Education - Global Week of Action".
Source: emancipating-education-for-all.org (overview of worldwide actions)
Lewisham, UK: Parents began to occupy a rooftop of a south London primary school in protest at the decision of Lewisham council to close it.
The occupation mirrors recent actions by parents in Glasgow where 13 primary schools and 12 nurseries across the city face closure or merger. Occupations and a rooftop protest at three schools have just ended there.
Riga, Latvia: Students on campuses across the city staged protest action against budget cuts of 60%.
Tokyo, Japan: About 1,500 students protested on campus of Hosei University against repression against student activists and the commercialisation of education. The struggle began in May 2006 when 26 activists were arrested on campus for distributing flyers, holding speeches and damaging a bulletin board. Since then there have been demonstrations and further arrests now and then. In reaction to the protests the student associations at the University were abolished. Six students were arrested during todays demonstration. Some of them only released at the end of this year [Dec.22nd] after public pressure increased and a sit-in was staged in front of the campus.
Arizona, U.S. of A.: Scenes of angry banner-waving teachers storming a council building or wearing all pink to school to protest about the handing out of "pink slips" - the nickname for redundancy notices - are becoming routine in the U.S. of A. as staggering 300,000 face loosing their jobs.
School across the U.S. are so short of funds that they have been slashing budgets and are now axing staff. A report by the University of Washington forecast that without federal emergency funding 600,000 education workers would lose their jobs between now and the academic year 2010-11 - at least 300,000 of them teachers.
Tens of thousands of teachers have already been handed their redundancy notices telling them that their jobs will be eliminated after the nend of this summer term.
Arizona has handed out an unprecedented 4,000 pink slips to teachers warning them their jobs will be cut this summer. That prompted the "pink protests" in Phoenix, when teachers who had not been given redundancy notices wore pink outfits to school in solidarity and dissent against the cuts.
Paris, France: University students, lecturers and researchers joined hospital staff to protest reforms they say undermine education's role as a public service.
The student's slogans mirrored those of their counterparts in healthcare: "Knowledge is not merchandise, Universities are not businesses!"
It is the eleventh time students and lecturers have taken to the streets in three months in defense of learning and study as a public service. Their complait is that a bill ("loi LRU") proposed by the Ministry of Higher Education regarding the freedoms and responsibilities of universities aims to grant individual institutions greater financial autonomy. The law also affects the role of researchers who lecture, whose hours of work would be "modulated", giving them less freedom in their pursuit of meaningful research, the protesters say.
"Access to higher education will become less egalitarian. We will see more selection according to how much students can afford to pay."
"Universities are in danger. The future of the smaller institutions is in question as is the future of students from poorer backgrounds who will find getting access to the big universities increasingly difficult."
Despite months of protests and little in the way of the government backing down on its proposed reforms, the protesters remain determined to keep up the struggle.
Organisers estimate 12,000 students and lecturers joined the demonstration. The police put the figure at 1,600. (haha!)
Cape Town, South Africa: The privatisation of universities not only affects the costs of student fees and the production of knowledge – it also affects the lives of workers at universities. On April 30th 2009, the University of Cape Town Student Worker Alliance (UCTSWA) marched in solidarity with the workers to the administration building of the University of Cape Town.
The student group has been organising for better working conditions for more than a 1,000 employees who are not considered part of the ‘core’ business of the university. Outsourcing took place in the late 1990’s as part of the neo-liberal project to increase ‘efficiency’ and ‘productivity’ by cutting costs. However, those affected by the decision to cut costs are not the policy makers but the workers on the ground, who now face unacceptable working conditions. Some earn barely enough to feed their families and most face job insecurity, intimidation and harassment on a regular basis. The march was attended by a few hundred workers and students, and culminated in handing over a letter from the workers and a petition from the students to the university management. The petition was signed by nearly 4,000 students demanding (among other things) higher wages, benefits and an immediate end to outsourcing. The atmosphere was powerful and sowed the seeds of hope in all who were present. The feeling of solidarity between workers and students was a rare moment, illuminating both the possibility of these conditions, and our ability to forge caring and ethical relationships. The refusal of the Vice-Chancellor of the university to receive the petition in person dampened the mood, and demonstrated the institution’s continued refusal to seriously acknowledge the voices of its workers and students. The end of the event saw workers returning to jobs whose conditions they had just passionately protested, demonstrating to all that the struggle must continue. Nearly one month later, the management of the university has failed to respond to both the workers’ letter and the student’s petition. We are now organising a follow-up march to demand that management responds and further action will be taken if they continue to fail to do so.
A luta continua!
Zadar, Croatia: During the grand opening of the museum of ancient glas, which was attended by the mayor and various other politicians dozens of students protested against the commercialisation of education, each one holding a letter. All together they spelled "Knowledge is not for sale!" in Croatian. Initially all citizens of Zadar were invited. But when the activists tried to enter they were stopped by police and asked, if they had an official invitation. The group argued with the police for as long as it took until the mayor actually arrived, who in the end had no choice but to let the students enter the museum as well. Once inside the museum the students formed a chain and displayed the sentence: "Knowledge is not for sale!".
This action was covered by the national media.
Source: ezadar.hr (in Croatian); E-Mail
Riga, Latvia: Students marched through the capital in protest against government cuts in education spending. Around 1,000 students processed from the central Dome Square to the Education Ministry buildings, where they laid a funeral wreath symbolizing the death of the public education system.
Spending on education is due to be slashed by 40% and around 5,000 teachers made redundant in the next academic year according to government plans.
Lewisham, UK: Angry mums have been protesting on the roof of a primary school for two weeks now, but the council is refusing to meet their demands.
New York City, U.S. of A.: Hundreds of parents and children protest against the privatisation of schools and overcrowded classes at City Hall.
Colombo, Sri Lanka: More than 2,000 students from seven medical faculties held a protest against the establishment of two private medical colleges. Students chanted: "Stop selling education! Abolish private medical colleges!."
New Delhi, India: Distressed about the school fee hike and the government's inaction in the matter, parents in the national capital sold vegetables and polished shoes as a mark of their protest.
"What else can we do? Where else will we get the money to pay for our children's school fee?" read a placard which hung around a parent's neck as he, along with scores of others who are part of the Delhi Parents Council took to the roads of Delhi's busy Chandni Chowk area.
London, UK: The canteen of London Metropolitan University's Commercial Road campus in Whitechapel has been occupied by students in protest over plans that could see 550 staff jobs axed. This is part of the campaign against LMU's scheme to restructure as a result of its massive financial crisis.
Unlike all the other universities occupied earlier this year, it seems that London Metropolitan will not allow this to run its course, as the management is taking the students to court to regain possession of the occupied area. There have also been reports that the govenors are getting in private security to prevent anyone from joining the occupation, therefore the students have been calling for support. As a consequence students and staff are calling for a demo in support for tomorrow.
Caen, France: "At 8pm, students where gathering outside the university building of Caen to organize the struggle. The blockade of the university was voted a few hours ago by 2,932 students at the general meeting of the week (1,556 voted for blockade; 1,252 voted for going back to classes ; 124 abstention). After a short demonstration, we gathered in a free amphitheatre for a few minutes then we prefered going out of the university building because the head chief of the police came in the presidents' office. We held our reunion outside, on the campus which is supposed to be a public place. At 8:15pm, 9 police van arrived. We were disappointed, we tried to rejoin calmly our mates who were holding a public meeting on the other side of the faculty, but we where stopped by the blue playmobils who controled our identities. They asked for our ID then ordered us to sit all together (like animals or terrorist...), searched our school-bags, then take a photo of each of the 50 persons present at this reunion. Then we were asked not gently to leave the campus immediatly.
This police intervention was one more intimidation. We don't bend in front of those repression mesure. It's only the beginning."
- a student from Caen, fighting for Education
London, UK: In support of the occupiers at the London Metropolitian University 100 students and staff gathered in front of the occupied building.
Munich, Germany: More than 17,000 people in 12 cities across Bavaria protested against the commercialisation of public education and tuition fees (500€ + admin fees of ~ 250€ per semester), which were introduced 2 years ago.
Bern, Switzerland: More than 30 students temporarily occupied a meeting of the council of the faculty of economic and the faculty of social sciences also attended by the university president to protest against restructuring the degrees by introducing the Bachelor in Social Sciences (BA SoWi). That way the decision could not officially take place. In protest against these reorganisations the final professor of sociology quit her job. One day earlier more than 300 students protested through the city of Bern.
Los Angeles, U. S. of A.: More than 800 adult education students, and community members marched outside Los Angeles Unified School District [LAUSD] headquaters in support of adult education and to protest the proposed deep cuts to its classes and programs.
Los Angeles, U. S. of A.: Students and teachers protest proposed education cuts. The head of the Los Angeles teachers union was among 39 people arrested during a sit-in outside school district headquaters, one among dozens of peaceful protests around the city by teachers and students outraged by plans for deep cuts in education spending.
The protesters' ire was stoked by plans for layoffs of as many as 2,500 Los Angeles school district teachers, the consequence of billions of dollars in statewide cuts to education.
Earlier in the week, a judge issued a restraining order prohibiting the teachers union from holding a one-day strike to protest the budget cuts.
Zagreb, Croatia: The occupation of the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences in Zagreb continues for the 28th day. Their demand: Free public education for all!
The classes are not held on the premises, but the Faculty Council has managed to organise classes at several other locations in the city, trying to create an appearance of work getting back to normal.
Yesterday, the day before local elections, the students held a protest march from their faculty building to the central square. A number of students from the Faculty of Political Sciences in Zagreb joined, as well as numerous citizens. During and after the protest flyers and brochures were handed out.
Turin, Italy: Students from across Europe gathered in Turin to network and protest: SherwoodCamp.Org
Police and demonstrators clashed on Monday as students gathered in central Turin to protest a meeting of university chancellors linked to Italy's programme for this year's Group of Eight summit. Police charged 100 demonstrators blocking roads outside the venue in the morning, prompting an unauthorized march and further tension in the afternoon. The demonstration broke up late afternoon, after protestors briefly occupied Turin's main railway station, Porta Nuova, and police carried out a second charge. Three people were arrested during the day. Two of them, a pair of Greek students.
Turin, Italy: Nineteen police and an unspecified number of protestors were injured in a second day of clashes when protesting against the "G8 University Summit". Thousands marched through the city. During the clashes tear-gas canisters were also used by the police force.
Los Angeles, U.S. of A.: 400 students staged a walk-out to protest possible teacher layoffs. The Los Angeles Unified School District face up to US$131 million in new cuts this year and could lay-off up to 2,500 teachers.
New Brunswick, Canada: A group of parents' organisations used a private meeting with Education Minister Kelly Lamrock to express their anger over planned cuts to the education system.
Barrow and Furness, UK: Hundreds of pupils walked out of class at Parkview School to protest against plans to close their school and turn it into an Academy.
Sacramento (California), U.S. of A.: Schools throughout the state are bracing for painful, deep cuts. Lawmakers met to discuss the multi-billion dollar cut backs coming to public education. Parents and teachers were there to protest the plan.
Rochester (New York), U.S. of A.: Students, parents, teachers and others marched to city hall to draw attention to proposed teacher position cuts as a result of the proposed school district budget. Most of the cuts will be reducing teaching staff in positions within arts education.
15 - 20/06
Germany: Students, teachers, pupils and parents united during a week of protest called "Bildungsstreik 2009" ["educational strike 2009"]. More than 100 local alliances consisting of student representative bodies, unions, NGOs and parents arranged protests and actions during the week. On Wednesday more than 250,000 people took to the streets in more than 90 cities across the country. Many university, administrative and state buildings were occupied by students and pupils.
For more details check out this entry: emancipating-education-for-all.org
Lagos, Nigeria: Thousands of students across Nigeria protested against school fees and the 2009 education budget. In Osun State alone 4,000 students of the Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU) boycotted classes and protested against so-called "neoliberal" education policies instead. In Lagos, where only a small group of about 20 students protested, the demonstration was brutally attacked by police forces. Among those arrested were Debo Adeniran (Coordinator of CACOL), the National Secretary of the Education Rights Campaign (Chinedu Bosah), the National Coordinator of the ERC (Hassan Taiwo Soweto) and Usman Oloyede (former PRO, NANS Zone D).
They are released on bail after having spent two nights in prision.
Chicago, U.S. of A.: Parents and children rally against budget cuts to early childhood education and child care, care for the elderly, support for foster parents, mental health services, ...
London, United Kingdom: Members of the University and College Union (UCU) protest against cuts and job losses at various colleges.
Arizona, U.S. of A.: Teachers of the Arizona Education Assoziation (AEA) union were out in force at the state Capitol demonstrating against a five percent cut to education. The doors to the house of representatives had to be locked.
Chennai, India: Students protesting outside the Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly against fee increases. Some arrests were made.
Dubai, United Arab Emirates: Parents protesting against fee increases at the Modern High School.
California, U.S. of A.: Students from across the state gathered to protest a 20% fee increase at the Californian State University (CSU).
Hannover, Germany: Students wearing flimsy dresses protested against tuition fees. That way they tried to raise awareness that an increasing number of students have to result to prostitution to pay for their education. This seems to be a bigger problem in Spain and France already. Apparently 40.000 students in France prostitute themself to pay for their tuition.
Kampala, Uganda: Students in public universities have asked President Yoweri Museveni to halt the 40% increment in fees. The petition, filed by student leaders, requires the President to respond within two weeks.
The affected five public universities are Makerere, Gulu, Kyambogo, Mbarara and Busitema.
The students noted that education, which they described as a fundamental right, would become a preserve for the rich. The Government should promote free and compulsory basic education by ensuring that every citizen can attain university education.
Oxnard, U. S. of A.: A group of education advocates began a weeklong fast to call attention to state budget cuts affecting the Oxnard School District. Three of the eight people who have pledged to participate in the hunger strike held a news conference and rally Tuesday at Plaza Park in downtown Oxnard. The group, which calls itself STARVE — Solidarity to Achieve and Recover Valued Education — was supported by about 50 people, many of whom work for the school district or city of Oxnard.
Otago, New Zealand: Students of various colleges protested against education budget cuts of $30 million.
Jaipur, India: Parents blocking a road while protesting against increasing schools fees.
Riphah, Pakistan: Students on strike against fees.
Johannesburg, South Africa: About 200 University of Witwatersrand students demonstrated against the university's proposed fee increase of 9-9.5% for next year. They sang revolutionary songs and disrupted classes by moving lecture halls and waving placards demanding that students whose student cards are being blocked be given access to lecture halls and libraries.
Prof. Loyiso Nongxa, vice-chancellor and principle promised "swift disciplinary action against students who contravened the university's code of conduct for students."
Quito, Ecuador: After a "free education rally" students at the Central University of Ecuador suffered heavy handed police repression.
“The Central University is literally free, all are able to attend classes whether or not you are enrolled for free of change. Free education is a right enshrined in the Ecuadorian constitution. However the new Law of Superior Education, being pushed through by the administration of “21st Century Socialist” President Rapheal Correa, proposes to change that, and is being met with determined resistance by students, amongst whom radical political groups, from the anarchist Chasqui Anarquista through to the Stalinist PCMLE have a heavy presence.”
Den Haag, the Netherlands: Students protested against the high costs of education.
California, U. S. of A.: Thousands of students and faculty and staff at the University of California staged rallies and walkouts on the system's campuses to protest sharply rising tuition, employees furlough, and deep cuts in state support for the university.
The largest crowd appeared to be at Berkeley, where police officials estimated that 5,000 people gathered for a noontime rally on Sproul Plaza, the historic site of protests during the Free Speech Movement. Several speakers lamented the university's dire budget situation, and protesters held signs and chanted, "Whose university? Our university!"
Smaller protests formed at campuses in Davis, Irvine, Los Angeles, and San Francisco, according to witnesses and news reports.
The unrest comes during a dismal year for the university in which state support was reduced by nearly 20 percent, leading to furloughs, enrollment reductions, and tuition increases that are likely to approach 50 percent over a two-year period.
Benin City, Nigeria: Commercial activities were grounded for several hours when a coalition of civil society groups, students and organized labour thronged the streets protesting what they decribed as the sorrow state of education in the country.
The Africa Network for Environment and Economic Justice [ANEEJ] stated: "... The continued closure of Nigerian public universities as a result of the four months old on-going nationwide strike embarked upon by members of Acadamic Staff Union of Universities [ASUU], the two weeks strike of the Nigerian Union of Teachers (NUT) demanding the implementation of Teachers Salary Structure (TSS) are clear signposts of a failing state with decayed social sector, which public educational institutions at primary, secondary and tertiary levels signposts nationwide. "The current situation is clearly a product of bad governance which has led to the continued widespread corruption with devastating consequences on basic infrastructure, with the rich getting richer and the poor suffering untold hardship."
California, U. S. of A.: Students staged a study-in at the University of California Berkeley's anthropology library lasting 24 hours.
California, U. S. of A.: Students gathered in front of the Oviatt Lawn with masking tape over their mouths. On the tapes, phrases such as "Your Voice", "My Voice" and "Our Voices" were written to symbolize the silence on campus against budget cuts.
Bangalore, India: The deplorable condition of the girls' hostel galvanized the postgraduate students of Bangalore University to stage a demonstration at Jnanabharathi campus on the outskirts of the city leading to disruption of classes.
The students' complaints ranged from lack of drinking water supply, supply of poor quality food and unhygienic toilets to the presence of rats and dogs in the girls' hostel premises.
With their repeated requests on improving the living conditions in the hostel on campus falling on deaf ears, the students, led by various organizations, began their protest by staging a road blockade at the entrance of the campus.
The protest took a turn for the worse when police tried to arrest apparent leaders of the students.
San Juan, Puerto Rico: The country was paralyzed by a general strike. It was directed against "Law 7", which is used by governor Luis Fortuño to fire over 22,000 workers this year and break all union contracts with public workers. More than 200,000 people joined the protests in the capital, many among them students. They were especially active in blocking highways. More protests are expected in the near future.
California, U. S. of A.: Students at UC Santa Cruz occupied the Humanities 2 buildings for several hours. They left again without police knowledge. One student was arrested and another is also on trial.
Vienna, Austria: The Academy of Fine Arts was squatted by hundreds of students to protest against the Bologna-Process, the commercialisation of education and for free and emancipatory education for all. For the complete statement and list of demands click here.
Source: malen-nach-zahlen.at [website of the squatters]
Skopje, Rep. of Macedonia: Close to 1,000 students protest against the increasing commercialisation and privatisation of higher education in front of government building.
California, U. S. of A.: Activists held sit-in at the California State University (CSU) Fresno.
Source: Indybay.org [incl. video]
Vienna, Austria: More than 2,000 people [mainly students] spontaneously decided to occupy the main lecture hall of the University of Vienna after a demonstration. Here is a statement released shortly afterwards:
We, students from all disciplines at the University of Vienna, independent from political groups or parties and spontaneously gathered in face of catastrophic developments in our university system, have squatted our university's main lecture hall on Thursday afternoon, and have now been occupying a large part of our university for more than 60 hours.
The open space was used to organize dozens of working groups, have plenary discussions with thousands of people, arrange concerts [e.g. Anti-Flag dropped by] and to invite speakers [such as Jean Ziegler]. The squatted space was evicted on Dec.21st.
Lublin, Poland: Protest action against lay-offs at the University of Lublin and the commercialisation of public education.
Source: KrytykaPolityczna.pl [in Polish]
24 - 29/10
Austria: Occupations are spreading on campuses across the country: Technical University of Graz (24/10 until 18/12), University of Graz (25/10), Technical University of Vienna (27/10), Ludwig Scharinger University Linz (27/10), University of Salzburg (28/10), University of Natural Resources and Applied Science Vienna (28/10) and University of Innsbruck (29/10).
Vienna, Austria: Up to 50,000 people took to the streets against the Bologna process, tuition fees and for free and emancipatory public education. About 500 protested in Salzburg.
San Diego, U. S. of A.: College and universtiy professors from North County to South Bay are staging a large-scale rally in downtown San Diego. They say budget cuts to higher education have to stop. The demonstration is the first to bring all San Diego County faculty unions together, including those who work in regional universities and community colleges. They plan to take their message to the streets, marching through downtown San Diego.
The rally coincides with another faculty forum about budget cuts at San Diego State University. Organizers say the demonstrations show faculty is now rising up against the cuts alongside students.
Port Harcourt, Nigeria: Students of the Rivers State University of Science and Technology (RSUT) embarked on a demonstration demanding the removal of the Vice Chancellor among other complains. The protesting students began mobilising at 5am, chased away school security and locked the school gates.
When riot-police arrived they asked shop owners around the vicinity of the institution to close and shot canisters of tear gas to disperse the students.
The early morning demonstration thwarted a meeting of the university's senate scheduled for the day. The students mounted bonfires at strategic locations on campus.
Various students were also arrested.
Innsbruck, Austria: Up to 800 students protest against the Bologna process and the increasing commercialisation of education.
San Diego, U. S. of A.: Up to 600 students and staff joined a walk-out at the San Diego State University to protest millions in recent budget cuts and mandated faculty furlough days.
Heidelberg, Germany: Up to 200 students begin with the first occupation of lecture halls in Germany.
Source: Bildungsstreik.net [in German]
Germany; Potsdam: About 60 students began to squat the largest lecture hall "Audimax" at the University of Potsdam, which is part of the castle Sanssouci [until 18/01/2010].
Source: BildungsstreikPotsdam.blogsport.de [in German]
Münster: Students began to occupy the "Audimax" and were evicted again only two days later [06/11]. Shortly after other spaces at the university were squatted.
Source: Bildungsstreik.net [in German]
Today marked the "Warm-up" Day of United Action of the Education is NOT for $A£€ - Global Week of Action, which saw protests in Canada [thousands demonstrate in various cities], Croatia [rallies in various cities], Austria [20,000 demonstrating in Vienna and almost 2,000 in Linz among others], Colombia [3,000 in Antioquia], Switzerland, Germany [occupations on various campuses + protest action at one school] and Bangladesh.
A worldwide press release was published.
Innsbruck, Austria: In reaction to the evictions at the University of Münster and University of Marburg students protested in front of the German consulate.
Kamez, Albania: Students began to go on strike and occupy parts of the Universiteti Bujqësor i Tiranës. Some even went on hunger strike, protesting against a new policy restricting access to "Master degrees".
Berlin, Germany: 300 students protest through the inner city for free education and in solidarity with the occupations in Austria.
Linz, Austria: Students began to occupy lecture halls at the University of Arts and Industrial Design.
09 - 11/11
London, England (UK): Student occupation at the London College of Communication (LCC) to protest cuts and the refusal by the administration to negotiate.
For more details: LCCoppose.Blogspot.com
Den Haag, the Netherlands: Students gathered in the city center for a protest performance: "De Leerfabriek" [the learning factory].
New York, U. S. of A.: Around 100 or so members of the Alliance for Quality Education, along with teachers union representatives, chanted outside the heavily guarded doors that lead to the govenor's offices.
They gathered outside before the budget address, to protest the govenor's plan for mid-year cuts to school aid.
Birmingham, England (UK): Hundreds of students gathered to protest a proposed increase in tuition fees.
Source: BirminghamMail.net (incl. video)
Kamez, Albania: About 300 students and parents blocked the entrance of the main university in the city in support of the ongoing hunger strike and occupation inside, where the power supply was cut off by the authorities.
One day later [12/11] the occupation was given up, after the authorities confirmed that everybody who began studies before 2007 can do a "Master degree". For all the others tough restrictions remain.
Germany: Students began to squat lecture halls at the followng institutions: Free University of Berlin, Humboldt University of Berlin, University of Bielefeld [evicted on 13/11; re-occupied on 03/12], University of Landau, University of Coburg, University of Würzburg, University of Hamburg [until 23/11], University of Hildesheim, University of Göttingen and Ludwig-Maximilian University in Munich.
Basel, Switzerland: Students began to occupy spaces at the University of Basel.
London, England (UK): Lobby hall of the rector's office at the London College of Communication (LCC) has been occupied by angry students protesting against restructuring plans and cuts.
Germany: Spaces at the following institutions were squatted by students today: Technical University of Berlin, University of Osnabrück [evicted on 24/11], Technical University of Rhine Westphalia [until 17/11] and Alice Salomon University in Berlin.
Duisburg, Germany: After the eviction of the main lecture halls on campuses in Essen and Duisburg hundreds gathered in the inner city to protest.
Vienna, Austria: More than 100 students spontaneously marched from the squatted "Audimax" to the German emabassy to signal their unity in their struggle with protests in Germany.
California, U. S. of A.: Students protest higher fees at UC sites. “Go organize on your campuses,” said Hill, a third-year student at the University of California Los Angeles.
“I can’t imagine a campus with people who don’t look like me. Somebody needs to make some real moves.” Hill’s impassioned pleas stirred the young crowd at a rally hosted by the 21st annual Students of Color Conference at UCSD. Yesterday was the last day of the event, and organizers held a rally to protest a more than 30 percent fee increase. Students from all 10 UC campuses attended the rally and the three-day conference, organized by the University of California Student Association.
Gießen, Germany: Students began to squat the "Audimax" at the University of Gießen. In the coming days many university buildings across the city were occupied.
Germany: The wave of occupations keeps spreading. Students at the following institutions began squatting spaces today: University of Lüneburg, University of Stuttgart, University of Paderborn [until 16/01/2010], Technical University of Beuth in Berlin and University of Freiburg.
This day marked the main day of protest during the "Education is NOT for $A£€ - Global Week of Action". 90,000 students, pupils, lecturers, parents and workers joined protests in about 50 cities across Germany, 150,000 took to the streets in Italy and thousands protested in 26 cities across France.
Furter protests also took place in Indonesia [Yogyakarta, Makassar and other cities], Switzerland [Geneva, Bern, Zurich and Basel], Sierra Leone [Freetown], Bangladesh [Dhaka], the U. S. of A. [Illinois, New York and California], Austria [Vienna, Linz, Innsbruck and Graz], Poland [Gdansk, Bialystok, Cieszyn, Warsaw, Lodz, Torun, Biala Podlaska, Olsztyn, Krakow and Lublin], Rep. of Macedonia [Skopje], Hungary [Budapest], Ukraine [Kiev] and the UK [Hull].
Pictures and videos, as well as more details, can be accessed here.
Chapel Hill, U. S. of A.: Twenty students picketed the Board of Trustees meeting as the trustees voted to increase out-of-state tuition by $1,162 for the coming year at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. The protest was called by Students Against Budget Cuts and Tuition Hikes.
Bradford, England [UK]: More than 100 students spontaneously gathered on campus at the University of Bradford to protest against an initiative making students pay fines who don't submit papers in time or miss exams.
U. S. of A., Los Angeles: Dozens of tents are cropping up on UCLA’s quad as over 100 students begin a tent city, part of an all-night protest against the budget cuts, layoffs and tuition hikes in the University of California (UC) system.
The students are waiting for buses filled with trade unionists and students from across the UC system to arrive in the early morning hours, in time for massive protests on Nov. 19 and 20. hundreds of students pushed past the barricades to where the UC regents were meeting. The protesters were met by repression, as police declared the assembly ‘unlawful’ and violently pushed the students back.
The police used Tasers on several students and arrested 14 others. Those who were arrested staged a civil disobedience action inside the committee meeting where the tuition hike was agreed upon, singing We Shall Overcome until they were removed.
Despite the mass protests, the UC regents voted to increase tuition 32% for the spring semester.
This increase is just the beginning, as another tuition increase is planned before the fall semester next year.
But it is clear that they will not be able to do it without a fight from the community. Students, faculty and staff of the University of California system are coming together to stand in solidarity and fight back against the budget cuts.
Santa Cruz: Over 500 students gathered at the Quarry Plaza and marched to the base of UCSC campus. After a general assembly they decided to occupy Kresge Town Hall. One day later [19/11] students decided to expand their occupation to Kerr Hall, the main administrative building. This occupation ended four days later [22/11; images].
Rio Piedras, Puerto Rico: Students at the University of Puerto Rico took over the main tower of the institution to protest for free education and against announced lay-offs.
Germany; Kiel: Up to 4,000 people - mainly students and pupils - protest against the increasing commercialisation of public education and for free and emancipatory education among others.
At the following institutions students and pupils began to occupy spaces today: Hulda-Pankok Comprehensive School in Düsseldorf [evicted on the same day], Albert-Einstein Secondary School in Berlin, University of Konstanz, University of Regensburg, University of Bayreuth, University of Düsseldorf, University of Kiel, University of Wuppertal, University of Kassel, University of Hannover, University of Rostock and the University of Halle.
18 - 19/11
Berkeley, U. S. of A.: Video reporting protests on campus [UC Berkeley] during these two days leading to the occupation of Wheeler Hall on the Nov.20th.:
Landau, Germany: Almost 2,500 people protest for free public education.
New York City, U. S. of A.: Activists went for a solidarity action during which two were violently arrested.
Copenhagen, Denmark: More than 50 students occupied the Sociology Department and barricaded the entrances to protest against proposed budget cuts [15% of lectures]. Eight hours later the administration gave in to the demands of the students and the occupation was given up.
Los Angeles, U. S. of A.: UCLA students occupied a campus building this morning to protest the tuition increase. The protesters stormed Campbell Hall, which is in the northeast corner of UCLA's campus, and chained the doors shut. Students camped out last night, and hundreds more are expected to join the protests leading up to the regents' meeting.
More than 2,000 students and union workers took part in protests campus-wide. Occupations across the different campuses at the University of California are spreading. Spaces were squatted at: Campbell Hall (UCLA), Mrak Hall (UC Davis administration building; 52 arrested), Kresge Town Hall and Kerr Hall (both UCSC).
Germany: Students began to squat spaces at the following institutions: University of Applied Sciences Cologne, Catholic University of Social Sciences Berlin, University of Oldenburg and the Ruhr-University of Bochum [evicted on 24/11].
Berkeley, U. S. of A.: Fifth building within two days was occupied within the University of California: Wheeler Hall (UC Berkeley). It houses a 760-seat auditorium and dozens of classrooms, including many large lecture halls. It is one of the most prominent buildings on campus.
Students barricaded themselves in a building on the University of California campus to protest a 32 percent increase in student fees and budget cuts. Late afternoon more than 40 people had been arrested.
Demonstrators at UC Berkeley occupied Wheeler Halland hung a sign from a window that read "32 Percent Hike, 900 layoffs," with the word "Class" crossed out in red. A group of students also rallied outside the building.
The occupiers were demanding the university rehire laid-off custodial workers and give amnesty to anyone arrested during the protest.
At UC Santa Cruz a group of students was blocking exits at Kerr Hall, which houses science departments and administrative offices.
More than 50 students were arrested during protests at UC Davis alone.
Regents say they had to raise fees because the cash-strapped state government can't meet the university's funding needs.
:: Video of Occupation at Wheeler Hall ::
California, U. S. of A.: A sixth building was occupied during the struggle on UC campuses: Dutton Hall at UC Davis.
Stuttgart, Germany: Up to 10,000 people protested for free and emancipatory public education, against any tuition fees and for a democratization of educational institutions. At some stages protesters were also attacked by police forces with batons and pepper spray.
Oakland, U. S. of A.: In protest of fee hikes and police violence on November 20th at UC Berkeley during the Wheeler Hall occupation, around 100 people occupied the lobby of UC headquarters in downtown Oakland.
Hours later students walked out of UCOP building after talking to some top level administrators. No arrests.
France: The first education sector strike since the beginning of the academic year gets underway. The educational professionals were joined by striking postal workers, who are protesting the privatisation of postal services.
"Nearly 40% of personnel" from state middle schools and high schools took to the streets for the strike, according to the education union Snes-FSU. This is the first strike in the educational sector since the beginning of the academic year, and it covers all levels of the school system. Three unions called for the strike a month ago in protest at the announcement that 16,000 jobs would be cut in 2010, this would bring the total number of job cuts across the sector to 50,000 over three years.
8,000 joined the rally in Paris.
Dublin, Ireland: Video from National Public Sector Strike.
[Unfortunately most unions still see this to be a national struggle - they couldn't even unite with workers in France.]
Details: IFUT.ie [Irish Federation of University Teachers]
Newcastle, England [UK]: Dozens of students protesting against higher tuition fees at the University of Newcastle.
Germany; Leipzig: More than 10,000 students, parents, pupils, trainees and teachers joined the demonstration against the general assembly of the "German Rectors' Conference" [HRK]. Theme of the protest was "NO voice without us! - for democratic education policies!". The HRK claims to be "the voice of universities in Germany". The protests were also directed against tuition fees, which are supported by the HRK.
Source: Uebergebuehr.de [in German]
Cologne: Spontaneous rally and occupation of the Humanistic Faculty at
the University of Cologne by about 800 students and pupils. Students also occupied the largest lecture hall of the university at the same time.
Bochum: 500 students marching through the streets near campus.
Regensburg: Students began to occupy lecture halls at the University of Applied Sciences.
Uelzen: Up to 2,000 students, pupils, parents and teachers joined a demonstration for free education.
Karlsruhe: Students began to squat a lecture hall at the Teacher Training College.
Dortmund: Students began to squat a lecture hall at the Technical University.
Lüneburg: More than 1,000 people took to the streets for free education.
U. S. of A.; Irvine: Up to 1,000 students and staff rally in front of Aldrich Hall at the University of California Irvine [UCI] to protest against fees. Apparently at least one person was arrested according to this video and pepper spray was used according to other reports.
More details: OccupyCA.wordpress.com
Davis: Students went back to Mrak Hall, where 52 people were arrested last thursday [Nov.19th], and launched the week's eighth UC building occupation.
More details: OccupyCA.wordpress.com
Croatia: After the huge wave of faculty occupations in April and May, students decided to re-start a new wave, protesting for free public education, which is accessible to the whole society. The following update was sent in:
"At today’s plenary session at the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences in Split, the students have voted to occupy their faculty and obstruct all classes. We have received news that the students of the Academy of Applied Arts in Rijeka have also decided today to occupy their faculty. That means that, currently, the following educational institutions are under student occupation in Croatia:
since November 23rd
» The University of Pula » The Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences in Rijeka
» The the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences in Zagreb [press release]
since November 24th
» The Faculty of Political Sciences in Zagreb
since November 25th
» The Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences in Split
» The Academy of Applied Arts in Rijeka"
Duisburg, Germany: About 1,000 students took to the streets after the State Minister of Science Prof. Dr. Andreas Pinkwart [Liberal Democratic Party (FDP)] faced them on campus holding a speech and defending his policies [e.g. the Bologna Process, introduction of tuition fees]. At the beginning students, who were not allowed to enter the lecture hall, stormed the place.
Lausanne, Switzerland: Students began to squat lecture halls at the University of Lausanne; the wave of occupations seems to be slowly spreading to the "French-speaking" part of Europe - hopefully.
Geneva, Switzerland: Students began to squat spaces at the University of Geneva. It's the fifth university within Switzerland alone to join the wave of occupations.
Groningen, the Netherlands: Students began to occupy the Bureau of Directors at the University of Groningen.
Belgrade, Serbia: Several hundred students marched in downtown Belgrade blocking traffic in the capital to protest changes to the education system that will tighten enrolement criteria and reduce funding for scholarships. The protest action lasted for two hours and disrupted the afternoon commute. The students warned of more protests in the future unless the government agrees to negotiate. The protests were actively supported by Dzo Crane workers.
As this statement shows, these protests also have to be seen in the context of the Bologna Process and the increasing commercialisation and privatisation of education in general.
According to these pictures students also took to the streets of Belgrade on the 23rd, but I have no details on that.
Waiblingen, Germany: Pupils managed to squat the biggest class room of the Staufer Secondary School.
Source: Bildungsstreik-Stuttgart.de (.pdf/ in German)
Dublin, Ireland: More than 50 students occupied Trinity College Dublin (TCD) against a €650,000 [38%] cut in the purchasing budget of the college library - and cuts in opening hours.
Cologne, Germany: "Bologna Corpses" - Flashmob action near the cathedral:
Frankfurt/M, Germany: The "Casino", a university building, of the Goethe University of Frankfurt/M was occupied by a few hundred students.
Source: HR-online.de [in German]
Pittsburgh, U. S. of A.: Some 150 students, bearing petitions with 10,150 signatures in opposition to the proposed 1 percent tuition tax, filled Pittsburgh Council Chamber in protest.
Budapest, Hungary: A group of activists appeared in the park near Petöfi bridge in order to protest against the commercialization of education. The location was not chosen randomly, as this park is used by students from tram 4 and 6 stop to ELTE.
At 8am the action began as two activists took the banner with the words 'Education is not for sale' in English and Hungarian. They were standing just in the middle of the road from the tram stop to the university so that all the students and teachers who were going to the university could see it. As the lectures start at 8:15am and 8:30am accordingly, around 400 students and teaching stuff saw the banner.
Riga, Latvia: Students protesting likely additional education spending cuts marched through the capital. Police estimated around 5,000 students marched to Saeima, Latvia's parliament, to call attention to pending education cuts being debated in the 100-member chamber.
Protesters carried placards and banners demanding their right to a properly-funded education and decrying spending cuts included the in government's budget proposals.
Zagreb, Croatia: About 400 students from Zagreb University's faculties of Philosophy and Political Sciences staged a protest outside the Ministry of Science, Education and Sports. They blocked the entrances, preventing employees from leaving. Police removed students who refused to budge.
At the same time students at the Faculty of Philosophy decided to boycott all lectures as they did in spring. The protesters struggle for free education on all levels for all.
Frankfurt/M, Germany: The occupied "Casino" at the Goethe University was brutally evicted by riot police in the evening. Here is a short report:
"This afternoon the president of the Goethe University of Frankfurt/M threatened the occupiers of the "Casino" [a building on campus] that he will exercise property rights, if they don't leave the building within 10 minutes.
Most students were not intimidated and decided to stay. One professor also stayed and defended the students' position.
Soon after [6.10pm CET] special police forces stormed the place.
The students, together with the professor, barricaded themself inside the "ballroom" and were beginning their scheduled alternative seminar titled "What does emancipatory education mean?".
Soon after the police managed to break through and entered the place. The windows were covered [to prevent the media from taking footages of the eviction] and everyone inside was encircled by the police.
The robocops asked the media to leave the room - those who didn't follow instructions immediately were pressured to do so.
Students linked arms with each other, but didn't actively resist. So they were carried outside - all 130 of them.
Hundreds gathered outside the building [but still on campus] and protested in support and against repression. Soon they were attacked by police forces as well - mostly with batons. Various students were injured and had to be transfered to the hospital. One girl had two fingers broken. Some were chased through the city.
In the end 300 students were ID'd [incl. photographed and fingerprints taken]. Hundreds received bans from campus or even the city by the police. Many are expected to be tried and are charged with "breach of domestic peace" [among others].
At least 2 students were taken into custody.
Soon after the eviction many gathered inside the "autonomous space" on campus called "Koz" to discuss on how to continue. People are angry and will not give up so easily.
As a direct reaction to these incidents about 50 students spontaneously decided to protest through the inner city of Marburg [Germany] to inform the public about the violence.
Messages of support can be send to: email@example.com
Lausanne, Switzerland: Today students began to occupy spaces at the fourth university within Switzerland - the University of Lausanne.
U. S. of A.; California: About 100 Cal. State L.A. students rallied outside Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger's office in downtown Los Angeles to protest state budget cuts to higher education.
Students blew whistles and shouted slogans like, "They say cutback. We say fight back!".
New York: Students of the State University of New York [SUNY] were joined by college president, faculty members and politicians rallying against cuts in state funding of higher education.
Lausanne, Switzerland: The occupation at the University of Lausanne was evicted by private security.
Frankfurt/M, Germany: Up to 1,000 people gathered on the streets of Frankfurt/M to protest the eviction at the Goethe University 24 hours earlier.
One day later students in Potsdam blocked a main street early in the morning to protest in solidarity. [details in German here]
Ambleside, England [UK]: Students took to the streets to protest against the University of Cumbria's plans to end undergraduate teaching at their Ambleside campus. Bosses at the debt-ridden university are looking to save £2million per year by withdrawing courses and selling buildings. Two hundred of the university's 1,400 staff will be laid off.
Michigan, U. S. of A.: Roughly 200 demonstrators gathered in front of Michigan State University's (MSU) Hannah Administration Building to save the Deaf Education program.
Holding signs that read "No Deaf Child Left Behind" and "Keep ASL" they expressed anger and concern about MSU's decision to cut the program.
An article in the Detroit Free Press (DFP) indicates that MSU needs to slash $50 million over the next two years and that, along with the Deaf Education program, they are also planning to cut more than a dozen majors and concentrations, including American studies and geological studies. Such cuts are not completely approved yet. but the school's music therapy program has already been cut, DFP reported.
Mannheim, Germany: About 3,000 students, pupils, teachers, trainees and parents protested for free education for all.
Kathmandu, Nepal: Struggle against the tuition fee increase at Tribhuvan University by up to ten times escalates. TU officials were detained by students for twelve hours.
California, U. S. of A.: In response to a publicly announced library occupation at UC Irvine, the administrators left the doors open 24 hours a day.
Wellington, New Zeand: Members of the deaf and hearing impaired community staged a silent protest against proposed education fund cuts outswide Prime Minister John Key's electorate office. People protested in sign language against proposals to cut Tertiary Education Commission funding for the Advance Centre, which helps with th education of deaf and hearing impaired people.
The centre said it would have to close if the funding was cut.
Vienna, Austria: Close to 3,000 people took to the streets to protest against the increasing commercialisation of education. [video with speech in German]
Although not directly related to education:
Greece: "Faced with political statements and intense rumors about the closing down of universities ahead of the 6th of December, we decided on the 3rd of December, ahead of the mobilisations one year after the state assassination of Alexandros Grigoropoulos, to come and remain in the Polytechnic – and so, with our physical and political presence, to keep this space open." [Dec.03rd - Statement by the assembly of the Open Polytechnic University]
Two days later 400 high schools and 30 universities across the country were squatted.
Rijeka, Croatia: Students at the faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences in Rijeka continue the occupation; the other occupations across the country were given up again.
Picture and details [in Croatian]: SlobodniFilozofski.com
California, U. S. of A.: Students at UC Berkely re-occupied the Wheeler Hall and initiated "Live Week". By doing so they aim to keep it open and reach out to the campus outside.
The place was kept for almost four days, until it was evicted and all people inside arrested.
New Delhi, India: Delhi University teachers stayed away from calsses in response to a strike called by DU Teachers' Association (DUTA) against "stifling of academic freedom". The bosses of Delhi University proposed to implement a biometric attendance system for its teachers and DUTA was protesting the move.
U. S. of A.; San Francisco: Up to 30 students began to squat the Business Building of the San Francisco State University.
More details: OccupySFSU.wordpress.com
California: Approx. 300 students staged a walk-out at the California State University Stanislaus against cuts.
San Francisco, U. S. of A.: 33 students were arrested at San Fancisco State University before dawn after some students barricaded themselves inside the building to protest budget cuts and tuition increases across the state's public university system.
The police entered the building at around 3.15am and arrested 23 people for misdemeanor trespassing. Ten protesters outside the building were arrested for misdemeanor unlawful assembly and resisting arrests.
Germany; Bonn: Up to 10,000 people came from across Germany to protest against plocies by the Conference of Education Ministers, who were meeting only a few hundred meters away. Tear gas was used by the police and several people taken into custody.
Details: KMK-Nachsitzen.de [in German]
Rostock: More than 1,000 students and pupils join a demonstration. The message is clear [see banners].
Augsburg: On the same day hundreds also joined a demonstration in Augsburg.
Magdeburg: More than 1,200 individuals joined education protests in the streets of Magdeburg.
Westminster, England [UK]: With placards held high, shouting “fightback” to the beat of a drum, students at City of Westminster College (CWC) walked out of their college today against budget cuts.
Abeokuta, Nigeria: The national secretariat of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has ordered its members at the Olabisi Onabanjo University (OOU) Ago Iwoye, Ogun State, to begin a strike to protest the recent sack of 130 lecturers of the institution. He said the
impending consequence of the mass sack was crisis because when the students who are going to be most hit start getting on the streets, it would be bad.
Vienna, Austria: Protest action inside the federal parliament. Students chanting: "Education of the people is a pre-condition for democracy!" in German ["Demokratie setzt die Bildung des Volkes voraus!"].
Aberdeen, Scotland [UK]: Dozens of student protested against imminent education cuts under the Aberdeen Defend Education Campaign (ADEC) banner. The protest was directed at the increasement and possible re-introduction of tuition fees, possible privatisation and outsourcing of university services and public sector cuts to education in general.
Hameln, Germany: More than 500 people protest for free education.
Rome, Italy: During the national strike of education thousands of students demonstrated in several cities across Italy against budget cuts and for basic funding and autonomy of research.
People proclaimed their solidarity with students evicted in Germany, especially in Frankfurt/M, during the demonstration in Rome. They also went in front of the German embassy expressing their solidarity with banners.
California, U. S. of A.: Eight people were arrested after protesters broke windows, lights and planters outside the home of the chancellor of the University of California, Berkeley. A university spokesman, Dan Mogulof, said 40 to 70 protesters also threw incendiary devices at police cars and the home of the chancellor, Robert J. Birgeneau, at night. There were no fires or injuries.
The protest at the chancellor’s home came late the same day that police officers arrested 66 protesters at a campus [Wheeler Hall] classroom building that was partly taken over for four days.
The protesters are demonstrating against state financing cuts that have led to course cutbacks, faculty furloughs and sharp fee increases.
Zurich, Switzerland: 2,000 students protest against the increase of tuition fees and the commercialisation of education in general. After the official demonstration more than 200 people still continued in a spontaneous demonstration through the inner city. Police threatened to attack the protesters twice. The crowd continued its march and everything ended peacefully in the end.
More details in German: UnsereUniZH.ch
Buenos Aires, Argentina: Students clash with police forces within the city centre. They were triggered by the controversial re-election of the rector at the University of Buenos Aires. A few thousand angry students tried to reach the location where the election took place, which was secured by the police. Rubber bullets, tear gas and water cannons were used; students responded by throwing stones. Many students were injured.
Protesters are angered by the continuing de-democratization of universities, demanding to talk to the rector and university body responsible.
New York City, U. S. of A.: More than 700 parents, staff and students protested against New York City's attempt to shut down Jamaica High School, Queens.
Vienna, Austria: Student groups said they were "shocked" after police evicted protesters from Vienna University's main auditorium after months of occupation. Students have occupied the "Audimax" auditorium since 22 October to protest against "over-subscribed courses" and the "Bologna process". The idea was also create an open space for all interested in reflecting the current state of the education system as well as society as a whole.
All remaining protesters - together with the homeless people who seaked refuge from the cold - were evicted by a special police unit on the order of Vienna University head Georg Winckler.
Details also on: Edu-Factory.org
Munich, Germany: The occupation of the "Audimax" at the Ludwig-Maximilian University was evicted at 6am in the morning after six weeks.
One day later [29/12] the squat in Würzburg was evicted as well.
Vienna, Austria: Students welcome a new year of protest and rebellion in front of the main building of the University of Vienna.