object width="370" height="277"> Students, including school pupils, clashed with police in protests last Friday against cuts There were protests in many cities against the cuts in education, which have been accelerated by the unelected government of technocrats led by Mario Monti, who has introduced a freeze in hiring new staff in the public sector. This can only exacerbate the problems in schools, as well as denying hope to the almost 40% of young people who are unemployed in the country. Last year teachers struck against cuts which saw thousands losing their jobs and increased class sizes. Now students including school pupils have taken to the streets to demand an end to cuts. The demonstration in Rome was led by a banner which read: "No to the Crisis and Austerity! Let's take back our Schools and Cities!" One demonstrator told the website RTQuestionMore : "We take to the streets not only to say that we do not accept these austerity politics, but also to bring to the attention of the public the problems of the schools, to say that the school is an important piece of society and we can't do without it." There were clashes between the protestors and police, with the police in riot gear attacking protestors with batons and pinning some to the ground according to reports. Some reports cite dozens of students injured. There were several arrests, including of a 15 year old school pupil who has since been returned to his parents. Meanwhile in Milan 15 students were arrested and five injured. These protests follow the same pattern as others in Spain, Portugal and Greece with young people leading the charge against 'austerity' and being violently resisted by the forces of the state.