Kiska: It’s Time to Move from Concept to Particular Measures in School Reform

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President Kiska meets Education Minister Plavcan (photo by TASR)

Bratislava, November 24 (TASR) – In addition to the good concepts currently being prepared, it is having political will and sufficient funding that is important for reform in the education sector, Slovak President Andrej Kiska said following his talks with Education, Science, Research and Sports Minister Peter Plavcan (a Slovak National Party/SNS nominee) in the Presidential Palace on Thursday.

The President pointed out that we have many various concepts being prepared in various fields today. However, its Plavcan’s political responsibility to prevent that concepts being currently elaborated do not end up forgotten somewhere. He stressed that Slovakia needs to post some achievements in this field soon.

“Eight months have already passed since the general elections, which is already one fifth of the electoral term. The time is right to actually move from concepts to particular measures. I think that the first half of next year will be decisive,” said Kiska.

If we fail to win support for new bills in the upcoming period, it will be much more difficult later. It can happen that there will no longer be a political will for them,” warned the president.

Kiska admitted that the education sector needs more money; however, the education sector must also show what society will get for the money. “Proposals we have discussed include unpopular, controversial measures. I publicly promise that I’m ready to help in gaining support for them, if I’m positive that something will actually move forward within four years,” added Kiska.

Plavcan informed the President that some measures will consist of minor changes, while some will be bigger and painful and that’s why teachers and other employees of the sector need to be prepared for the changes to come.

Meeting all goals will require higher funding than what is declared in the Government Manifesto, said Plavcan.

Plavcan only recently submitted for a professional discussion the second part of the National Programme for Education Development’s targets that apply to universities. The material has been prepared by a working group composed of the minister’s advisors.

Following a professional discussion, the targets will probably be completed by particular measures needed for their achievement and submitted as a part of the National Programme for Education Development for a public discussion in early 2017.