Thursday, December 3, 2009

Education is not for Sale

On 30 November a group of activists appeared in the park near Petöfi bridge in order to protest against commercialization of education. The location was not chosen randomly, as this park is on a way of students from tram 4 and 6 stop to ELTE.
At 8 the action began as two activists took the transparency with the words 'Education is not for sale' in English and Hungarian of it. They were standing just in the middle of the road from the tram stop to the university so that all the students and teachers who were going to the university could see the transparency. As the studies start at 8-15 a.m. and 8-30 a. m. accordingly, around 400 students and teaching stuff saw the transparency.
Most of the students were in a hurry, but some stopped on their way to ask for the reasons of this small action. There were also several professors that got interested in this action as they had negative attitude towards commercialization of education, as well as implementation of Bologna system in Hungary. The most interesting experience was the question by one of the professors about the reason of the action: "Who wants to buy the university?"
Overall, it was a successful action and hopefully it made students think about the system of education and their place in it. Moreover, if there is such an action, this means that not everyone is satisfied with the current state of arts in higher education system in Hungary, but not many people can do anything about it, or even express their concerns openly to the public. Hopefully, this situation will change in the future, and Hungarian students will start learning how to fight for their rights.

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