Conservative opposition Jobbik views public education as a priority of national policy and this is why it is calling for 6% of GDP, or even up to 8%, to be spent on the sector, a party lawmaker said. At a press conference, Koloman Brenner commented on news reports that the government planned to introduce a preparatory year before primary school for children not mature enough to start school. He said Jobbik’s educational programme also addressed the issue of how to handle the transitional period between kindergarten and primary school. The party agrees that the plan to introduce a preparatory year indeed addressed a genuine issue, he said, adding that Jobbik wants a proper professional debate, however, to assess whether the move would be justified.
He said there were many open issues concerning the plan, such as whether kindergarten teachers, primary school teachers or possibly special needs teachers should oversee children during the preparatory year. The transition between kindergarten and primary school is important, but it is necessary to ensure that the preparatory year would indeed serve its purpose, he added, calling for detailed professional and methodological guidelines to be drawn up instead of relying solely on the national core curriculum.
Brenner said the fact that ten months before the introduction of a new national core curriculum no information had been released about its details showed that ruling Fidesz was “clueless on education”. At the same time, he said the government had owned up to several “burning issues”, such as the “catastrophic situation” of language teaching in the country.