Sunday, 23 January 2022 | News today: 0

President Ivanov tries to bring feuding university professors together

Macedonian President Gjorge Ivanov met on Monday with representatives from the Plenum of professors and the Plenum of students, two groups of university professors and students that are opposed to the education reform that is currently debated in Parliament.

President Ivanov’s office informed that at the discussion, he and the professors and students agreed on the need to reform education and ensure quality high education. The representatives of the two Plenum organizations explained their views on the proposed laws, that will introduce a new state examination in the high education, and will require professors to publish at least two papers in internationally recognized magazines over five years. Before the meeting, the two groups announced they will ask the President to not sign the law, if it passes through Parliament.

“President Ivanov said that Macedonia needs a successful transformation of the high education. During the meeting, President Ivanov expressed his concern about the tendency of division in the academic community and called on unity and dialogue to overcome the situation”, the press release from the President’s office announced.

On Tuesday, Ivanov will meet with another organization of university professors, which supports the introduction of the state examination and the requirement to publish relevant research papers. President Ivanov, himself a professor at the Law faculty before he was elected in 2009, suggests a joint meeting of the two sides, to discuss their differences. The Plenum, opposed to the reform, refused to take part in a debate organized a week ago, even after a personal invitation from Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski. Both groups of professors also sent letters stating their cases to the European Commissioners for education and enlargement.

The Plenum of professors has announced they will boycott their work if the law is adopted in Parliament and if it is signed by President Ivanov. Students held three rallies against the proposal.

Meanwhile, a number of changes were introduced to the law, guaranteeing that students will be able to continue a part of their studies even without passing the first of the two examinations.