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The Economist Explains Why Mexico's Teachers Are Wielding Axes

The Economist
go to original
April 29, 2013

Teachers’ strikes normally involve nothing more extreme than an orderly march and some well-punctuated placards. In Mexico they are more serious affairs. In recent days teachers have gone berserk in the south-western state of Guerrero, setting fires and attacking the offices of political parties with home-made weapons. What made them swap their board-rubbers for baseball bats?

The protests come as Mexico’s new government tries to push through a big education reform. It makes what, in most countries, would be considered fairly modest proposals: that teachers should no longer be allowed to sell their jobs or pass them on to their children, for instance. But Mexico’s teachers have the largest union in Latin America, and one of its most boisterous. Enrique Peña Nieto, who became Mexico's president on December 1st, passed a law opening the way to education reform in February, but until implementing legislation is passed it doesn’t count for much. Even then, making sure the law is obeyed will be difficult.

Read the rest at The Economist

(Photo: AFP)

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