★ ISM - UK
Sri Lanka, Sept. 24-28th:
Long Marches for Free Education
For months lecturers in Sri Lanka have been on strike in the struggle for proper funding of public education. On August 29th thousands already took to the streets of Colombo and clashed with riot police. For details on the aims of the protests as well as pictures of that day check out ism-global.net.
For five days (Sept 24-28th) thousands of students, lecturers, parents and others took part in two long marches for free education. Each march covered a distance 120km. One march, which was organised by the Inter-University Student Federation (IUSF) among others, departed from city of Kandy. The other march, which was organised by the Federation of University Teachers Associations (FUTA) among others, began in Galle. Both headed to Colombo and ended in a huge rally.
Check out the video below.
Take a look at this video in english:
Protests against new 'Higher Education Act'
Therefore this new bill on higher education is part of the whole process, which increases the privatization and commercialization of education even further. A process that can be observed around the world and that makes common efforts in the struggle for free emancipatory education more necessary than ever. After all education is the basis for the emancipation of the individual as well as society at large and therefore should be considered a fundamental right.
Strikes at Universities in Greece
The following email was sent to the mailing list of the Edu-Factory collective on September 21st 2012:
During the past weeks there has been a wave of faculty strikes in Greek Universities. These are the reasons for the protests:
against Commercialisation of Education
In the struggle against (tuition) fees as well as the increasing commercialisation of education in general students at the Polytechnic University of the Philippines (PUP), in the capital Manila, decided to shut down the institution for a week (Sept.17-21).
Activities during the strike are also directed against 40 years of martial law. Although there's currently no legal declaration of a state of martial law, military tactics and operations frequently include measures such as forced disappearances, warrantless arrests and extra-judicial executions, especially in areas outside cities. Nowadays most of the victims of such military operations are farmers, tribal leaders, and environmentalists who oppose the operations of mining companies in their villages.
On Tuesday a huge flashmob was organised on the PUP campus.
Students at the University of the Philippines (UP), also in Manila, joined the strike for a day on Wednesday. And also at other colleges and universities people arranged protest activities in solidarity, but also to connect to the struggle.
The week of action will reach its peak on Friday (Sept.21), which will see a mass mobilisation for a protest rally in Mendiola Street.
Stop the Sell Out of the
VU University Amsterdam
The following message was communicated through the ISM platform:
Dear International Student Movement friends,
You may have heard the alarming news about severe budget cuts at universities and higher educational institutions in The Netherlands. We understand that this is not just a very local problem at our VU University Amsterdam, but that the problem occurs in the whole country and internationally. Concern is growing about the sell out of universities as public institutions. Our university is particularly ardent in its implementation of their plans to reduce fixed costs and attract more industrial subventions, bypassing advice from the official partners, the trade unions and the works council. We, students and staff-members, are taking serious action to prevent this undemocratic process and we have launched an international petition. We particularly seek support from student organisations because student facilities and teaching are the main victims of the reorganisations.
We kindly ask you to post our call for support on your website, and of course to sign it. Below is the text you could forward.
Bertie Kaal (Concerned VU group member)
CALL FOR SUPPORT
Esteemed Colleagues and Students,
We, your colleagues at the VU University Amsterdam, need your help. We seek international solidarity to stop our Executive Board from implementing a Strategic Plan based on a strict business model that has recently been rejected by the VU University’s Works Council and the Trade Unions. This plan aims at changing our university into a commercial knowledge industry, at the expense of 450 full-time jobs and severe cuts in student services. Full details on our petition site.
Please support our cause and sign the petition! Click on the button below for further information about our situation and your signature.
We urge you to distribute this international call for support as widely as possible.
The Concerned VU Group, VU University Amsterdam
Click on this banner to find out more and support the petition: