Teachers, students in Spain strike over broad budget cuts

By Daniel Woolls, AP

MADRID–Teachers and students from every level of Spain’s education system went on strike Tuesday to protest wide-ranging government spending cuts, erecting makeshift tombs at university campuses to symbolize what they claim will be the death of the country’s schooling system.

Union officials said 80 percent of the country’s teachers took part. All but three of Spain’s 17 regions participated in the stoppage, the biggest in a series of strikes so far this year that had until now been scattered around the country. The Education Ministry did not return a call seeking government figures.

Spain’s government is pushing through painful austerity measures to heal public finances, which risk being overwhelmed by the costs of helping a troubled banking sector. Investors fear Spain might eventually need a bailout like Greece, Ireland and Portugal.