Teachers are the key actors in education

2024. 02. 12.

At today’s plenary session, the European Parliament held a debate on the working conditions of teachers in the EU through a petition discussing the poor working conditions of Romanian teachers. Fidesz MEP Andrea Bocskor emphasized: “Education is exclusively the responsibility of the Member States; the EU only has a supporting and advisory role to help the field. They can do this with recommendations, by sharing best practices, or with cohesion resources that support the development of this area, but by no means by withdrawing powers or interfering with content.” Regarding the item on the agenda, she added: that the Hungarian government considers the improvement of the situation of teachers and their moral and financial respect to be of utmost importance, and therefore – despite the mutterings of the Hungarian left-liberal EP representatives – introduced a significant salary increase and measures to make the teaching career more attractive.

This  debate drew attention to general problems in the field of education faced in the Member States, including the overload of teachers, the lack of further training possibilities, inadequate remuneration, and the shortage of teachers. The representative emphasized: “The ageing of the teaching community and the unpopularity of the profession among young people is also a general challenge for which complex strategic measures can be the solution.”

MEP Andrea Bocskor added: “Based on all these considerations, the Hungarian government has introduced several employment elements, which make the career of a teacher more attractive: on January 1, 2024, it implemented a significant salary increase of 32.2% on average and undertook that by 2025, teacher salaries will be raised up to 80% of the average salaries of those holding diplomas, additional allowances will be given to those dealing with disadvantaged students, and there will be allowances and commission fees for various additional tasks. A unified performance evaluation system was introduced in the 2024/2025 school year, coupled with a reduction of the administrative burden: teachers’ teaching supervision and self-evaluation were abolished, and working hours became uniform, 24 hours per week. For the counterbalance to demographic processes, retired teachers can continue to work if they wish.”

MEP Andrea Bocskor noted in connection with the comment: the EP representatives like Klára Dobrev, Márton Gyöngyösi, István Ujhelyi, Anna Donáth, Katalin Cseh, Sándor Rónai, Attila Ara-Kovács, and Csaba Molnár have tried to prevent the arrival of EU funds in recent years with continuous fake news, which enabled the higher teacher salary increase. However, their activities failed, and the Hungarian government implemented the teacher salary increase as promised.