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"Government will Make Principled, Decisive and Consistent Changes in the Field of Education and Science": Nikol Pashinyan

Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan called a consultative meeting to discuss the draft law on higher education and science and the proposed amendments.

The Prime Minister stressed that the aforementioned draft law is important and principled: “Why do we have to amend the law? We need it first of all because it seems to be obvious that we are facing serious problems in the system of education. We must admit that our educational system does not guarantee the development of our country, moreover, it does not support the aspirations of our country, our people, our nation, the ambitions that are already formulated as a governmental program, which are formulated as a strategy and of which we have spoken many times.

I wish to reiterate that the Government will make decisive, principled and consistent changes in this area. But this political statement is not absolute in the sense that we cannot say that we are the only source of truth and that we have found the key to all problems.

That we cannot continue this way is clear, but of course we should think of not only reforming the system, but also reforming it in a way to ensure our natural development, catch up the time we have lost because, considering that education has undergone profound changes worldwide, and we must choose other ways to fill the gap in time and content. Nevertheless, we will have to launch a truly motivated and professional discussion in order to take note of experts’ opinions, refine our position and make the reform more effective.

I mean that dialogue should be a key factor in this process. In fact, dialogue is a priority for the government as I am convinced that the success of any reform depends on the number of people who consider it their own success. Therefore, our task is to focus on as many opinions as possible. Even if it is necessary to say that the government of the Republic of Armenia, which enjoys the confidence and the support of the Armenian people, can be an author when we note that our openness to dialogue is not used to make the process more efficient, but when our willingness to dialogue will be used to put a stop to the processes. It just will not happen and I want all of us to come together and move forward decisively,” the Prime Minister said.

Minister of Education, Science, Culture and Sports Arayik Haroutunyan said that the draft law provides for the integration of higher education and science, introduction of a single-level system for granting scientific degrees and full implementation of the three-level higher education system, implementation of academic programs or courses in foreign languages, introduction of new principles and organizational mechanisms of admission to the university and so on. Also, it implies introducing new principles and mechanisms for funding higher education and science, keeping university management away from politics, greater autonomy of universities and scientific organizations, academic freedoms and accountability, promotion of administrative staff of universities and scientific organizations, academic rejuvenation, discretionary teaching of Armenian language, Armenian literature and Armenian history in higher educational institutions, etc.

The Prime Minister stressed the need for holding detailed discussions with all stakeholders in order to find conceptual solutions to the problems existing in the field of education and science.

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