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No alternative to tuition fees

January 28th, 2012

A leading left-wing analyst regards the introduction of tuition fees for Higher Education unavoidable, in order to improve quality. He finds the government’s reform of university financing unfair, nonetheless.

“The opposition claims unanimously that we need not less, but more university places, which is true. … But in order to achieve this, we would need to spend much more on higher education. And it is absurd to imagine that the State could find that money in its own coffers,” Sándor Révész comments in Népszabadság, on the grievances raised against the government’s decision to reduce the number of state-financed full university scholarships (see BudaPost January 26).

Révész also agrees with critics of the government who find the allocation of the funded places unreasonable. And he finds it highly problematic that applicants will have no access to support on the basis of social status.

But he also believes that the opposition should acknowledge that quality education is costly, and that the state cannot finance all the expenses of higher education. Whether one likes or not, middle class families will have to reach in their pocket in order to finance the university education of their children, and many young Hungarians will also have to take huge student loans in order to graduate, Révész concludes.