MPs from the opposition Slovak Democratic and Christian Union (SDKÚ) want to put an end to 'unjust' payments for school attendance, party caucus chairman Ľudovít Kaník said on Thursday, July 19. Kaník met with two teachers from Dobšiná (in Košice Region) who highlighted abuse of the school system in an open letter. To remedy the situation, the SDKÚ plans to submit relevant legislative changes as early as the next parliamentary session.
According to Kaník, the social system in Slovak education is unfair. "It doesn't reward children who attempt to work hard and free themselves from a socially debilitating environment. The system today has turned into one which rewards a group of people who simply adhere to the law – and we find this unacceptable, and discriminating to a degree," Kaník said, as quoted by the TASR newswire. Citing the teachers' letter, he stated that children often come to school only for a few classes just so that their parents can be eligible for the cash benefit for attendance introduced during the first government of Robert Fico. As well as addressing MPs, the primary school teachers from Dobšiná also published their open letter on social network sites. They complained about the behaviour of pupils from what they called 'socially inadaptable' Roma families,
The Sme daily wrote in its Friday issue that SDKÚ MPs appear divided over initiatives touching on Roma issues. Apart from Thursday's meeting with the Dobšiná teachers, Kaník also recently visited Plavecký Štvrtok in western Slovakia with SDKÚ chairman Pavol Frešo. That visit focused on the issue of illegal structures, something which the party proposes to take a strong stand against. SDKÚ MPs Lucia Žitňanská and Miroslav Beblavý commented that the topic itself and the draft bill to be issued by the party are all right, but that the SDKÚ should find another way to present the problem, describing the current approach as 'populist'.
Sources: TASR, Sme
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.