April 25 - Protests turn violent in Mexico as striking teachers set fire to political party offices in the southern state over Guerrero over an education reform plan to introduce competency exams for teachers. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
(ROUGH CUT ONLY - NO REPORTER NARRATION) Angry teachers on Wednesday (April 25) attacked offices of Mexico's main political parties in the capital of the southwestern state of Guerrero to protest against an education overhaul, breaking windows, spray-painting walls and starting fires. Dozens of teachers opposed to President Enrique Pena Nieto's new education reform ran riot in the city of Chilpancingo, trashing installations of his Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) and the main opposition parties as well as leftist rivals Party of the Democratic Revolution (PRD). Police were nowhere to be seen. Teachers in Guerrero, home to the popular beach resort of Acapulco, are fighting the legislation that aims to revamp the country's failing education system by imposing tougher oversight of teaching standards and cracking down on abuses. The law takes away control of teacher assessment from a powerful teachers union and seeks to end the practice of teachers passing on posts to relatives or simply selling them. Teachers have been one of the most militant groups in Mexico in recent years, periodically causing major disruptions in some states during efforts to force through change. The protests in Chilpancingo kicked off after Guerrero's state congress on Tuesday (April 24) rejected demands from the teachers to amend the education bill, which involves constitutional changes that must be approved by Mexico's state legislatures. Pena Nieto signed the education law in February. Lawmakers must still draw up separate legislation to implement it.