December 6, 2013
Students occupy 5 schools in BA City against education reform
Buenos Aires City students continued to occupy five schools today in a show of protest against the reform of the education program carried out by the administration of Mayor Mauricio Macri.
Schools are the Mariano Acosta, the Normal 1, the Bellas Artes Rogelio Yrutia ,the Lenguas Vivas and the Nacional Buenos Aires.
Head of the Nacional Buenos Aires Students Council Juan Manuel Cuello spoke with media and said protesters are “fighting an educational reform that teachers, parents and everybody reject except the (local) government.”
With the buildings occupied, students called for a “protest with classes.” However, according to Cuello, the Nacional Buenos Aires principal “did not allow teachers to stay and give class.”
The conflict in Buenos Aires City schools follows other several protests last year when students first began to reject official plans that aim to redesign the education program by reducing the number of technical and guidance subjects and introducing more credit hours into language, maths and English courses.
Meanwhile, national education minister Alberto Sileoni said he supported students’ right to protest but pointed out it is "necessary" to have classes. “I never thought something different. I have always said we welcome student’s involvement. Together with that, I want them to have class, we need to have classes,” the official stated.
With a stricter tone, Sileoni’s counterpart in the city Esteban Bullrich warned “taking schools over is not the way” and ratified the government’s decision to recover the protest days.
Bullrich also accused students of “attacking the public school” and added that “those" carrying on with the occupation "are not being affected by the reform.”