Protesters gather at Statehouse to press for school funding

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BOSTON (AP) — Students, parents and teachers have converged on the Massachusetts Statehouse to call for an increase in education funding.

The protesters are pressing state lawmakers to pass bills that would boost state spending on pre-kindergarten through high school by more than $1 billion a year.

The protesters say they also want the state to increase funding for public colleges and universities by more than $500 million a year.

They say the additional money would help address what they describe as inadequate and inequitable funding that has reduced services for students, particularly those in lower-income communities.

The protesters say they also want a five-year freeze on tuition and fee hikes at public colleges and universities.

Thursday's protest was organized in part by the state's two top teachers unions along with community groups.

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