Doctoral students in the Czech Republic are complaining that they don’t
receive sufficient financial support from the state, Czech Radio reported
on Sunday. Although the government recently raised the monthly payment to
PhD students by almost 50 percent, up to 11,000 crowns (around 428 euros)
per month, many of them still have to seek extra income.
According to the data released by the Ministry of Education, the drop-out rate among PhD students is around fifty percent. Nearly 10,000 students started their doctoral studies in the Czech Republic in the academic year 2014-2015, but only 4,749 of them graduated in 2017-2018.
Young Czech women surpass men in education, according to data released by
the Czech Statistics Office.
Over 40 percent of young women have a university degree, which is 13 percent more than their male contemporaries.
More women than men also speak two or more foreign languages, according to a survey conducted between 2010 and 2017.
Although an increasing number of women are overqualified for their jobs, they make on average 25 percent less than men.
The government is looking to introduce changes to the educational system to
place greater emphasis on apprenticeships, the daily Hospodářské noviny
The move is part of a long-term strategic plan to increase the Czech Republic’s overall competitiveness and bolster innovation.
Among those working on the plan are experts from the Confederation of Industry, Chamber of Commerce, Association of Small and Medium Enterprises and Tradesmen, and representatives of schools and the ministries of education and industry.
Prime Minister Andrej Babiš (ANO), as chair of the government’s R&D council, will oversee implementation of the strategic plan, which identifies 10 key areas requiring fundamental change.
These include creating half a dozen development centres for making breakthroughs in artificial intelligence, laser technology and nanotechnology.
Representatives of the Ministry of Education held talks on Monday with the
director of the Czech counterintelligence service BIS, Michal Koudelka, on
reviewing the way modern history is taught in the country’s schools.
In an annual report published last month, BIS said that the current Czech system of modern history teaching is modelled on a Soviet narrative, which may make some students more susceptible to Russian propaganda. A ministry official said the meeting with Mr. Koudelka had confirmed that in a period of hybrid threats it was more important than ever to devote due attention to ensuring balanced teaching of history.
The Minister of Education, ANO appointee Robert Plaga, said he would launch a debate on revising education plans, which set the parameters for content, later this month.
After months of debate, the coalition government has agreed in principle to provide free school lunches to children from the “neediest” families enrolled in nursery and primary. But the ANO and Social Democrat parties have yet to agree which families are “poor” enough to qualify, or when to implement the change.
The Ministry of Education has fined six foreign universities or branches of
them on Czech territory, Czech Radio’s iRozhlas news site reported on
Tuesday. The universities lack the required licenses to teach in this
country. The ministry is not permitted to reveal their names.
Officials have also filed criminal complaints against two third-level institutions for failing to return admission fees paid by people who never started courses. Administrative proceedings are also being conducted with five schools.
Sixteen foreign universities have fulfilled all legal requirements to offer services in the Czech Republic and passed Ministry of Education checks.
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