They came to deliver a message to the School Reform Commission (SRC), the mayor and governor: "Restore funding for Philadelphia schools!"
The mood was boisterous and upbeat as some 2,000 demonstrators massed outside Philadelphia School District headquarters in an attempt to stop threatened closing of nearly 30 public schools.
Nine Occupy Wall Street activists held a sit-in and were arrested at the Comcast Center in downtown Philadelphia urging the giant cable company to pay its fair share.
Cantor's appearance had been planned for 4:30, but the news came earlier in the day that the Congressman had cancelled when told that the general public would be admitted as well as Penn students.
Philadelphia prosecutors now have a choice of holding a new sentencing hearing or allowing the former Black Panther to serve a life sentence without parole.
Over 100 rallied outside the downtown office of Sen. Pat Toomey, R-Penn., Sept. 1 to deliver the message.
Hundreds of school employees and supporters packed the meeting of the School Reform Commission to protest the district's announced 1,500 layoffs.
An appeals court has granted Mumia Abu Jamal a new sentencing hearing in the death row political prisoner's ongoing legal battle. The decision represents the second time the appeals court has rendered such a judgment.