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Colombian Student Strike to save Public Higher Education Forces Government Retreat, for Now

One month ago university students in Colombia launched mass, indefinite national strike to stop the proposed reform of Law 30. This ‘reform’ would have deepened the role of private finance and given bankers effective control over educational decisions at nominally public sector universities.

Commentators say the student movement has returned as force not seen since the 1970s.

<p>One month ago university students in Colombia launched mass, indefinite national strike to stop the proposed reform of Law 30. This 'reform' would have deepened the role of private finance and given bankers effective control over educational decisions at nominally public sector universities.<br /><br />Commentators say the student movement has returned as force not seen since the 1970s.</p>

One month ago university students in Colombia launched mass, indefinite national strike to stop the proposed reform of Law 30. This ‘reform’ would have deepened the role of private finance and given bankers effective control over educational decisions at nominally public sector universities.

Commentators say the student movement has returned as force not seen since the 1970s.

The strike culminated in mass protests involving up to some 550,000 students last Thursday 10 November. On Friday the Colombian government has backed down and offered to withdraw the proposed law, for now. 

This is a momentous victory for students and staff working together, and a huge step forward in the global struggle against privatisation and austerity.

Carlos Gonzalez, a leader of the higher education workers union SINTRAUNICOL and human rights campaigner Berenice Celeyta will be speaking in London this Thursday, 17 November.

http://www.colombiasolidarity.org.uk/events/26-upcoming-events/559-higher-education-environment-and-human-rights-in-colombia-today

The Colombian Solidarity Campaign has called a picket of the LSE when President Santos comes there to speak at lunchtime on Tuesday 22 November.

http://www.colombiasolidarity.org.uk/events/26-upcoming-events/558-new-driver-but-same-direction-heading-for-a-train-crash

RESOURCES

The Chile contagion has spread.  Secondary school students interviewed on Telesur:

Mobilization for a better education continues in Colombia
http://www.youtube.com%2Fwatch&v=m9M7JdmWnZI&feature=youtube_gdata_player

Today, colombian students are protesting against the reform of education proposed by the government …

Press reports in English:

Students to protest despite offer to withdraw education reform bill
http://colombiareports.com/colombia-news/news/20339-students-to-protest-despite-santos-offer.html

Colombian students clog capital to protest education reforms
http://www.miamiherald.com/2011/11/10/2496558/colombian-students-clog-capital.html

Colombian students to lift strike, but under conditions
http://colombiareports.com/colombia-news/news/20414-colombian-students-to-lift-strike-but-under-conditions.html

 

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