Macedonian student protests defeat new exam system

Macedonia has agreed to abandon a new law that had called for university students to sit externally supervised exams, following major student protests, Balkan Insight reports.

Students had occupied university departments in Skopje and proclaimed them “autonomous territory,” Turkish Weekly reported earlier this month. In December, the measure prompted 10,000 students and academics to march through Skopje “in what was considered the biggest student protest in Macedonia’s post-independence history,” according to Balkan Insight.

Students had argued the new law undermined universities’ autonomy, while the government said it would “improve the overall standard of higher education,” according to Balkan Insight.

The government’s reversal means students will now stop boycotting classes, but they will continue to occupy the philology and philosophy departments of Skopje’s Saints Cyril and Methodius University, where students have been teaching their own alternative classes for the last 15 days, Balkan Insight writes.

An outline for a replacement law was agreed on this week among students, professors, the university rector, and the ministers of education and finance, Balkan Insight reports.

This article was originally published by Transitions Online.


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