Anti-Troika Protest in Portugal The Portuguese teaching union FENPROF is organising a protest against education cuts The government is proposing to increase teaching hours from 35 to 40 a week, increase lesson time and increase pupil numbers. The union believes that this will not only affect teaching and learning conditions adversely - it will also enable the government to sack 35,000 teachers over the next two years and cut the pay of those that remain. According to an article on the Education International (EI) websiteThe Cavaco Silva government is also considering increasing higher education fees, introducing fees in secondary education – hitherto compulsory and free – and strengthening private education. FENPROF General Secretary, Mario Nogueira, describes this as a package of regressive measures put forward by the Government and “handed down by the International Monetary Fund”. These measures, he said, are “an attack on public education and the teaching profession”. Last term there were huge demonstrations in Portugal against the imposition of austerity measures by the so-called Troika - the International Monetary Fund, the European Union and the European Central Bank, which is wreaking havoc in public services across southern Europe - in particular in Greece. As Nogueira said: “It is time to break our silence and our meek acceptance. Teachers demand respect. We demand a future for Portugal." Teachers will be demonstrating en masse on January 26th.