ATHENS – Moving to upgrade education standards after the former ruling Radical Left SYRIZA was accused by critics of dumbing it down, the ruling New Democracy said it will tie levels of state funding to public universities to hitting higher benchmarks.
As of 2021, some 20 percent of the state’s budget for universities will only be delivered if they adhere to criteria set by national higher education authorities, according to Education Minister Niki Kerameus, said Kathimerini. A lawyer, she was the valedictorian at the Athens College, is a graduate of the University of Paris and Harvard Law School and is a member of the bar associations in Athens as well as New York.
Addressing a meeting of university rector, Kerameus said funding to universities in 2020 would be the same as that set by the previous government but that the evaluation the next year will have different criteria.
That includes tying 80 percent of the regular funding to standards such as the number of students and teachers, geographical distribution and other standards, with the remaining 20 percent set by the education authority.
Greek educators, teachers and public workers resisted evaluation attempts to rate how well they are performing.
A SYRIZA education chief had said that excellence in education “was not a virtue” and there were elements in the party that wanted virtually everyone admitted to college even if they failed entrance exams and wanted them to be able to stay for life without graduating.