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Vol. 74/No. 11      March 22, 2010

‘We can’t be passive’ about
attacks on public education
LOS ANGELES—More than 2,000 people marched through downtown Los Angeles March 4 to protest cuts in funding to public education. There were rallies of 2,000 at California State Long Beach and 500 at the University of California, Los Angeles, and smaller rallies at the Cal State Los Angeles and Dominguez Hills campuses. Walkouts were reported at six high schools here.

Lindsay Cozart told the Militant she was taking a semester off from college and working to save money to go back to school. “They should march from one end of the city to the other. This is affecting the entire state,” she said.

Mario Medina, a garment worker, is taking evening English classes at the Jefferson adult public school. He said most of the teachers and students there joined the protest. “They want to close the adult school,” he said. “Right now we don’t pay for the classes. They want to open up new programs that you have to pay for. It’s very important for workers to have the school. We’re trying to learn the language.”

“We’re here because things are getting worse,” said Jose Cebrian, a student at Belmont High. “Janitors are getting laid off, football is cut back, and after-school programs are being cut.” He said that some classes have 50 students. They can only rarely take textbooks home and their gym class is 60 people.

“This protest is a call out to let people know we can’t be passive,” said Jose Hernandez, a Cal State Fullerton student. “I’m for restructuring the whole education system from the bottom up so we are not just trained to be robots in a capitalist society.” Referring to cutbacks to humanities classes, he added, “They want a society with no heart, that just produces.”
Related articles:
Calif. protesters say: Stop education cuts!
Thousands rally against school layoffs
Scotland protest opposes school cutbacks
Seattle students march against tuition hikes
Students and workers protest N.Y. transit cuts
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