Draft legislation designed to overhaul tertiary education in Greece will be presented toward the end of September, according to the Education Minister Anna Diamantopoulou.
There will be no two-speed system for admissions. We are not confusing the roles of tertiary education and post-high school education.
During a meeting with representatives of the Panhellenic Federation of University Teachers’ Associations (POSDEP), Diamantopoulou said that Prime Minister George Papandreou would present the bill on September 26.
Teachers will have three months to put forward their ideas about the changes they want to see in the sector.
Diamantopoulou did not reveal the details of the proposed legislation but the government has already indicated that it wants university reforms to be based on four themes: the overhaul of the content of studies and research, the introduction of courses in foreign languages and the possibility of some departments or even institutions merging, all with the ultimate aim of allowing universities to manage their own affairs, free of state intervention.
One reform that will not be included in the bill will be the ability for students at private tertiary colleges to gain admission to public universities, Diamantopoulou said, insisting that the only way to do so would continue to be through the senior high school exams, which are also due for an overhaul.
“There will be no two-speed system for admissions. We are not confusing the roles of tertiary education and post-high school education,” said Deputy Education Minister Evi Christofilopoulou.
However, Christofilopoulou said that the government is looking at ways for students who have completed vocational training to be able to enter technical colleges (TEI).
POSDEP president Nikos Stavrakakis said that his union backs the government’s reforms “in principle”but that time should also be set aside for discussions with university academics.
Stavrakakis also backed the government’s decision to shut down two private colleges this week after announcing that they did not have the appropriate licenses.