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The second round of nationwide teachers’ strikes in Iran: What we learned

Brave Iranian teachers held the second round of their strikes across the country
Brave Iranian teachers held the second round of their strikes across the country

Analysis by PMOI/MEK


Iran, Nov. 17, 2018 - This past week, the brave Iranian teachers held the second round of their strikes across the country on November 13 and 14. Protesting teachers posted their demands on social media. Some of those demands included free education, an increase of teachers’ wages, the release of imprisoned teachers, free education for everyone, safe and standard schools, new and modern education system, rights of teachers to assembly and association and the right to education in native language.

According to the reports provided by the PMOI/MEK network from inside Iran, teachers from 342 elementary schools, high schools, and industrial education facilities in at least 84 cities from 25 provinces staged sit-ins in schools.

The previous round of teachers’ strike, held in mid-October, also trended widely in social media and was met with vast support. Shortly after the strike, university students of Tehran followed in the footsteps of their teachers and held sit-ins in their universities holding protest signs in support of school teachers.

Photos posted on social media and received by PMOI/MEK on November 13 and 14 show strikes in major cities of Iran– teachers in the capital Tehran, Isfahan, Shiraz, Mashhad, Sanandaj, Tabriz, Urmia, Sari, Babol, Qazvin, Arak, Kermanshah, Zanjan, Ahwaz, Bushehr, Ilam, Karaj, Ardebil, Shahr-e Kord, Qom were some of the important cities where the strikes took place.

The people of Kurdish regions have also played an impressive role in the recent strike as they sent the very first photos, announcing the start of teachers’ strikes. Kurdish teachers also demand the right of Kurdish children to study in their own native language, a demand that has been given a cold shoulder by the regime.

One of the most significant aspects of the teachers’ strike was the students' support for their teachers. Many students held protests signs against the regime’s policies and in support of their teachers’ demands especially the right to free education. In Marivan, students refrained from attending classrooms. In Isfahan, students left the school in the early morning in solidarity with their teachers. In many schools, students uploaded photos on social media in which they wrote sentences and hashtags on the classroom board in favor of striking teachers.