Wednesday, 23 November 2016

Demonstration against education reforms in Warsaw

"Tens of thousands of teachers, pupils and parents have rallied in Warsaw against education reforms proposed by the right-wing government. Critics say thousands of jobs could be slashed."

"Rally organizers said up to 50,000 people attended the demonstration on Warsaw's central Pilsudski Square - the latest in a series of protests critical of government policies. Police put the figure closer to 30,000."

"The reforms envisage changing the three-tier school system to just two levels, which means that many high schools would be closed."

"Demonstrators were also concerned over proposed changes to the school curriculum, including the inclusion of `patriotic values` espoused by the ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party."

"There were placards claiming Poland's education system was headed for `chaos.` Slawomir Broniarz, the head of Poland's main teachers' union, was cheered as he called on Szydlo's PiS party-led government `not to destroy the assets` of Poland's current education system. Broniarz called for a `massive social front` to mobilise against the reforms."

"Prime Minister Beate Szydlo told a Catholic broadcaster that schools should not only teach but also `raise` children."

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