ATHENS – Over howls from students and the major opposition SYRIZA who don’t want standards for education, the New Democracy reform bill passed by the Parliament the Conservatives control will require students to get passing grades on university entrance exams.
The law also will set time limits on how long students can stay in universities without graduating, booting them if they don’t, unlike now when so-called “Eternal Students” can stay that way for life.
The government – previous New Democracy regimes didn’t move to upgrade the standards – argued that students who can’t pass exams shouldn’t be allowed into universities and be required to attend classes and graduate.
The newspaper Kathimerini said an analysis had found that of 186 of the 459 departments of Greek universities, the last successful candidate had a final score equivalent to a failing grade, or less than 10,000 points out of a possible 20,000 or 50 out of 100, an F in the United States.
In many of those, a failing grade was the top score. In one such case, the last successful candidate had scored 625 points, essentially almost zero but still enough to get into a university.
Many of those departments teach subjects with very little demand. Most are in former technical schools upgraded to universities en masse by the previous leftist government, the paper said, adding that the aim was not to educate students but get them into cities around the country so they could spend money to help the economy of the municipalities.