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The minister spoke, but he did not convince. The concessions made this morning by Catalan education minister Josep Gonzàlez-Cambray were not enough to prevent the streets of Barcelona from being filled with teachers for the second day in a row. This time the scene was another central street, Carrer Tarragona. The demonstration started at its top end - in the Plaça dels Països Catalans - and arrived at its seaward end, where the annual education fair, the Saló de l’Ensenyament, is being held at Plaça Espanya. According to city police, 10,000 people took part in this new mobilization, fewer than on Tuesday; but enough to make it clear to the education administration that the teaching community is annoyed with the management of the sector. The Catalan ministry did, however, assert that participation in the strike by teachers and educational employees had fallen significantly - to 15%, they said - on this second of three planned days of industrial action this week. The strike is to continue on Thursday.

It all started this morning, when the minister Cambray was obliged to miss the official opening of the annual education fair. The portfolio holder did so to avoid the picket line that was awaiting him in Plaça Espanya in Barcelona, ​​and instead, he called an urgent press conference at his ministry. There, he called on the teachers' unions to continue negotiating their demands, and meanwhile, to call off the strike and the street mobilizations, offering one concession to reduce the tension: announcing that schools will not be obliged to apply the new curriculum in the next academic year, but rather, that they can apply it from September 2023 if they so wish.

Several union sources were critical of Cambray's message in statements to And in fact, Iolanda Segura, spokesperson for the largest union, USTEC, told the media before the start of this Wednesday's demonstration that the educational community rejects the minister's proposal because they feel "deceived". "He told us that the curriculum question could not be postponed," she said.



Despite Cambray's back-down, protesters took to the streets again. The atmosphere was festive throughout, despite the calls for their political boss's resignation on several occasions. Protesters once again set off fireworks as they made their way to the trade fair venue, and there was singing and chanting in favour of education and against cuts. Graffiti was painted - on the asphalt - to condemning the Catalan education ministry and to make it clear that the school community is taking to the streets for reasons that go beyond the "last straw" issue which precipitated matters, the change in the school calendar. Just as important, they say, are spending cuts, curriculum issues and students' mental health.

Avenida María Cristina, manifestación maestros profesores, intento de entrar salón d'ensenyament, esposes - Sergi Alcàzar

When the marchers arrived at the Barcelona trade fair complex in Passeig de Maria Cristina, however, a small group of around hundred people tried to enter the venue where the education fair is being held and there was a confrontation with the organization, which ended up closing a gate and not allowing anyone to enter.