Hundreds of Albanian students and university professors marched yesterday in Tirana against the privatization of Higher Education and higher tuition fees proposed by government Reform on Higher Education.
Tuition fees are already high in Albania and the new reform law seeks to increase them more. In a country where minimal wage is 150 euros per month, tuition vary from 200 to 1000 euros.
Students and professors are against economical discrimination in one of the Europe’s poorest countries, least to say – University in Tirana is almost unanimously against these reforms.
If the reform is implemented the government will pay for the privileges of the private education sector with public universities’ funds, in turn increasing tuition fees in public universities. Also, it would mean that students are even more excluded from the decision making structures in the university and would be turned into service consumers.
Yesterday’s protests have been organized by the group “Per Universitetin”, or “For the University”.
“93 percent of the students are studying in public universities and not a single of these institutions has asked for this transformation, how is this reform then justified?”, asked the lecturer Jani Brand, writes Albanian Top Chanel.
Demands of the protesters are: Withdrawal of the proposed project law and the initiation of a new democratic process by the students and the professors, progressive decrease of tuition fees toward free public education for all, increase of public budget invested into public universities and the enhancement of student participation to decision making structures.
Students are announcing that if their requests are not granted, they will protests in front of office of Albanian Prime minister Edi Rama day after day.