Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

FOCUS

Obama focuses efforts on US prison reform

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Rousseff defends her track record

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

More debates on the economy, not on the burkini

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Apple set to face record tax penalty from EU

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Weiner strikes again

Read more

THE DEBATE

Colombia's Path to Peace: Can historic deal with FARC rebels work? (part 1)

Read more

THE DEBATE

Colombia's Path to Peace: Can historic deal with FARC rebels work? (part 2)

Read more

FOCUS

The rise of political tourism in the Middle East

Read more

ENCORE!

Music show: Video Music Awards, Rock en Seine and Puppa Lek Sen

Read more

Thousands gather to protest education reform

Video by FRANCE 24

Text by AFP

Latest update : 2008-10-30

People thronged the streets of Rome in continuing protests against government plans to reform the education system. Union leaders, meanwhile, called for a general strike in schools across the country.

Tens of thousands of people took to the streets of Rome Thursday in protest at Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi's multi-billion education cuts.
   
Demonstrators started gathering in the capital at around 0830 GMT to unveil a banner which read: "Everyone united together for schools."
   
They were joined by Walter Vetroni, the leader of the left-wing Democratic Party, and former anti-corruption magistrate Antonio di Pietro, the head of the smaller Italy of Values party.
   
Berlusconi put forward a new state budget in August that aimed to save more than nine billion euros (11.6 billion dollars) in education spending and cut 130,000 jobs in primary schools.
   
His proposals were approved Wednesday following a vote in the Senate, Italy's upper house of parliament.
   
Domenico Pantaleo, an official from the Italian General Confederation of Labour (CGIL) union, said the changes would "destroy" Italy's public education system.
   
"These are not reforms, these are just budgetary cuts. The government is destroying public schools and replacing them with a private system. We're not going to discuss it and we will go ahead with the protests," he said.
   
Unions called for Thursday's general strike to be observed in all Italian schools. Separate protests are expected to take place in other major cities across the country.

Date created : 2008-10-30

COMMENT(S)