Teachers riot against Mexican reforms

April 25, 2013 at 8:03 AM

CHILPANCINGO, Mexico, April 25 (UPI) -- Teachers angered by extensive education reforms have attacked the offices of political parties in the Mexican state of Guerrero, officials said.

Masked protesters started fires, attacked the offices with pickaxes and sprayed slogans on the walls for several hours Wednesday, the BBC reported.

Teachers also targeted a senator's office and the state education department building by breaking windows and tossing desks and chairs out of the buildings, the BBC said.

The state governor has asked for help from the federal government to deal with the protests.

Reforms that are angering many teachers impose centralized teacher assessments and seek to end corrupt practices, such as buying and selling of teaching positions, the BBC reported.

Union representatives said the reforms could lead to layoffs and are a step toward privatizing education.

The protests came a day after the Guerrero state Legislature refused to change the education bill, which includes constitutional changes that each state must pass.

Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto signed the education law in February but legislators need to draw up separate laws to implement it, the BBC said.

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