Over 300 students marched through Palma and hundreds of others took to the streets in Ibiza and Minorca yesterday in protest over new government education reforms. As part of a national protest called by the Students Union, students from 50 of the Balearics' 54 secondary schools joined the marches against central government's highly unpopular, but approved, Education Quality Law and the LOU education reform programme. Student union leaders in Palma said that more would have joined the march through the capital had it not been for the bad weather. Students across Spain are angry over the educational reform programme introduced by the conservative Partido Popular government, claiming that funding is being cut while more money is being pumped in to private sector schooling. Students are calling for a seven per cent increase in public sector funding and “not a peseta more” for the private sector. The seven per cent increase will create an extra 250'000 university places and make it easier for people to go to university. “Education is not something negotiable by the management it is a fundamental right and the state has got to guarantee quality education at all levels and make sure students go on to university,” student leaders said.

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