State maturita as a tunnel into the state coffers? The project must undergo a consistent audit as soon as possible!
The Social Democrats consider the collapse of the state maturita project a serious problem which may mean a serious threat to the standard of education in our country. The repeated failure of the state maturita together with the deep suspicion that the whole project which cost more than 1.5 billion crowns from the state coffers was overpriced, gives grounds for an immediate and consistent solution.
ČSSD repeatedly drew attention of the Nečas government and the former minister of education Josef Dobeš to the problems inherent in the state maturita project and we protested emphatically against its launch. Today’s declaration of Premier Nečas that the state maturita is a dead project is an open confession of the fatal failure of the right-wing government in this matter! It was precisely Premier Nečas, members of the Cabinet and coalition deputies who had given the green light to the state maturita project. How will now the government of ‘budgetary responsibility’ explain to the public that it wants to blow the final whistle on a project behind which it stood two years ago and which cost the public funds unnecessary hundreds of millions of crowns?
ČSSD is deeply afraid that the state maturita is a big tunnel into the Czech school system! The responsibilities and the cash flows must be investigated as soon as possible!
ČSSD therefore insists that this project, which is in our opinion badly configured and overpriced, undergo an in-depth audit, both financial and process. The content of the maturita should also be audited, that is the tests and their structure. It is only on the basis of such audit that we can decide the future fate of the state maturita.
The audit should particularly focus on contracts which are not terminable signed in the past in connection with state maturita. Likewise, it is necessary to check all the other contracts.
ČSSD is not against the idea of state maturita as a system comparative test but we utterly reject this ineffective, overdeveloped in administrative terms and overpriced form.
The question is not whether the project should be cancelled, but how it should be changed so that it achieves its purpose and it not overpriced. It is necessary to correctly configure this project so that it is much cheaper, more flexible, and accomplishes its purpose. Our education system has a number of problems and it would be very unfortunate if we kept debating the state maturita for the next fifteen days.
Marcel Chládek, shadow minister of education for ČSSD
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