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article imageStudents take to streets in protests throughout Spain

By Anne Sewell     Oct 18, 2012 in World
Madrid - Amidst ongoing protests throughout Spain, thousands of students took to the streets in Madrid on Wednesday, angry at proposed education cuts which they say leaves them with "no future."
While thousands marched in Madrid as part of a three day action, according to local police, a further 3,000 rallied in the streets of Barcelona and thousands more protested in Valencia and other major Spanish cities.
Many of the students wore green T-shirts, as worn by the Marea Verde Mijas group, reported in Digital Journal in July this year.
Marea Verde T-shirt for public education for all.
Marea Verde T-shirt for public education for all.
Since 2010, around $6.5 billion has been cut from the Spanish education budget, tens of thousands of teaching jobs have been lost, and there have been dramatic increases in tuition fees.
"Tuition fees have risen sharply. Last year I paid 700 euros and this year it is 1,300 euros," said 21-year-old journalism student Laura Ruiz.
Irene a 21-year-old student said: “It is shameful the same people have to pay for someone else's fraud. So we are here to demand that we have the right to education because every year workers pay tax for a public education and public health.”
Class sizes have increased, subsidies for textbooks have gone, scholarships and school dinners have disappeared. In Valencia last winter, students complained of no heating in the classrooms, and the same problem is expected during the coming winter.
The students chanted, "Bankers' money to public schools!" as they rallied ih the streets of Madrid, referring to the billions of euros the government has given to bailout Spain's ailing banks, as it cuts social spending in all aspects, including health and education.
With half of the Spanish youth between the ages of 19-25 unemployed, these students have had enough and feel that there is no future for them.
It is anticipated that on Thursday a further, larger protest will be held with a nation-wide "truancy day" to protest against the cuts, in which parents and teachers will also take part.
Photos of Wednesday's demonstration can be viewed here.
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