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Letter to the Editor: University accreditation comments offensive

Dear Editor,

I am writing in response to the story "Troubles of Slovak universities pile up" [By Soňa Bellušová and Chris Togneri, Vol. 5 No. 43, Nov. 15-21].

I don't doubt that [chairman of the Education Ministry's Accreditation Commission] Lev Bukovský's concerns are purely academic, but his comments as reported in your article suggest that while he is not prejudiced against the Mečiar regime, he is certainly prejudiced aginst the students who accepted what was offered to them [at universities established by the Mečiar government in 1997, which have recently been denied accreditation because of low-quality programmes].

My wife, for example, was enthusiastic to study Arabic and accepted a place at the Philological Faculty in Banská Bystrica because it was the only course available in all Slovakia in that year. How could she have been expected to check whether or not the school had accreditation? It was, after all, a state-run school [Bukovský had said that "students at these [Mečiar-founded] schools who have been studying for three or four years should ask themselves why they didn't check before enrolling that the school was, in fact, accredited."].

Professor Bukovsky's comments are offensive to people who are simply the victims in this situation.

Roger Heyes
Banská Bystrica

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