Opposition MEP to request that EC make education reform in Hungary condition for EU funds

May 30. 2023. – 02:51 PM


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"Radical measures are needed on education, and I will request that the European Commission include the implementation of education reform as a condition for receiving EU funds."

- Anna Donáth, Momentum MEP said at the party's campaign launching press conference in front of the cordons at the Prime Minister's office.

She added that more specifically, she will ask the Commission to request that the Hungarian government withdraw the (Teacher) Status Law and implement an immediate 50 percent pay rise for Hungarian teachers. She said she was sure that she would come under attack for this, but added that it would be a betrayal if they were to sit silently and watch as Hungarian education and the children's future rot to pieces.

Ferenc Gelencsér, the president of Momentum, spoke about the shortage of Hungarian teachers, which he called dramatic. 3,738 teachers left the teaching profession in 2021, and 5,316 in 2022. Every second teacher is over 50 years of age, and only 7 percent of those in the profession are under 30, which, according to the politician means that there are no successors.

According to Gelencsér, instead of solving the situation, the government is preparing a slave law for the teachers. This law could directly lead to the immediate resignation of 4,600 teachers.

Gulyás: If there is EU money, there will be a pay raise

We can raise teachers' salaries the moment the EU money arrives, Gergely Gulyás, Minister of the Prime Minister's Office has repeated several times at the latest government briefing on the subject, and presumably this will be the government's reaction to this news as well (which we will update our article with).

Update: The statement about the “left wing plotting against their own country” says:

Hungarian teachers are not getting paid because of left-wing politicians like Anna Donáth, who is admittedly working for 5 million forints a month to stop Hungary from receiving the EU funds it is entitled to and to stop teachers from earning 800,000 forints a month. Teachers could have received their pay rise a long time ago if the left had not been plotting against their own country and if Hungary had already received the EU funds it was entitled to.

The government has repeatedly said that it believes that "Hungarian left-wing MEPs are blocking the arrival of EU funds for political reasons". Gulyás said that the government had closed the corruption cases, and that even if "all the left-wing, green, semi-communist accusations were true", there would be no possibility of corruption, because the EU money would be transferred to the teachers straight away.

We summarized all you need to know about the protests for education which have been going on in Hungary here, and if you'd like to hear how students see the situation, we recommend this video from one of the protests.

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