The opposition Jobbik party has vowed to conduct a review of the transfer of Hungarian universities to foundations if it enters government.
Jobbik lawmaker Koloman Brenner told an online press conference on Facebook on Wednesday that his party did not object to the principle of running universities differently to the state model, but it disagrees with the practice of stripping teachers and students of their decision-making powers and handing them to supervisory boards. He said universities had enjoyed autonomy “ever since the middle ages”.
Brenner said Jobbik supports academic freedom and the autonomy of universities, and proposed reducing the “outstandingly high” administrative burdens placed on lecturers, reducing the weekly number of classes and setting up an independent ministry of education.
The Jobbik politician called on ruling Fidesz to stop policies “hostile to knowledge and the intelligentsia”, to provide more resources for teachers’ wages and student benefits, and spend more on halls of residents and other infrastructure developments.
The government announced on Tuesday that after many other public universities, Gödöllő’s Szent István University of agriculture will be taken over by a foundation on February 1, too.
Featured photo illustration via Koloman Brenner’s Facebook Page