Fidesz has just delivered a major blow to minority education

“Fidesz has just delivered a major blow to minority education,” said Jobbik MP Koloman Brenner in his Saturday press conference held in Sopron. “The public education act’s new amendment does not allow parents, teachers or local minority councils to have their say in the appointment of institution directors.”

Jobbik finds this tendency worrying. The MP explained the problem with the example of Sopronbánfalva’s national minority school where the mayor wanted to appoint a director who didn’t speak German at all. At that time, the local German minority council was able to veto the appointment but the current bill, if adopted, will no longer allow them to do so. “Just think about it: how would we feel if the principal of a Transylvanian Hungarian school spoke no Hungarian?”

Mr Brenner put the problem in a social perspective. The MP explained that local minority councils used to have a veto right in such matters but their consultation rights had later been curbed. For example, their approval is no longer required for finalizing education programmes and curricula. “In the form submitted to the Parliament, this bill grants no consultation rights for local minority councils whatsoever.”

Pointing out another problem arising from the bill, the MP noted: while earlier regulations required minority school principals to have a teacher’s degree in the particular minority language, the new amendment would remove this condition, too. Jobbik finds this approach unacceptable from both the professional and the minority protection aspects, he suggested. Jobbik was the only party to focus on the situation of Hungary’s minorities in its election programme, and they now demand the government to withdraw the current form of the bill, Mr Brenner concluded his press conference.


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