Teachers in Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo, the two largest cities in Brazil took part in more mass protests in the city this week. The protests coincided with Teachers' Day in the country, on October 15th, and once again teachers got plenty of support from communities. Just like last week, the protests were met by police repression and there were dozens of arrests. Laws have been brought in in the country which mean that protestors who are found guilty of 'violence' can face years of imprisonment.

The state government is not only refusing to speak to the teachers, but has started proceedings to sack teachers on the basis that they have absented themselves from work 'without justification'. In fact the teachers have been on strike for two months with a series of justified demands such as an improvement in the often abysmal conditions in public schools, improved pay and pensions, and an end to privatisation and the package of neo-liberal 'reform' in education, which as one put it has: "transformed classrooms into production lines, dehumanizes education and promotes a climate of competition that only harms the young students." 

There is increasing anger in the country about poverty and inequality, which is symbolised by the billions of dollars being spent on the two internationally prestigious projects - the football World Cup and the Olympic Games. Public services in the country are in a parlous state, meaning that poor people have to attend underfunded schools, while the better off send their children to private schools. Young people have been in the forefront, both of the mass demonstrations in June, and also they have been very evident in the teachers' protests, often taking on the heavily armed security forces, who are accused of violent on demonstrators, most recently teachers. In Sao Paulo, the use of rubber bullets by police, which was suspended in June, has been reinstituted.

Send solidarity to the teachers in Rio - check out how