The must-have newsletter about Hungary

Related Articles



All 3,200 localities in Hungary would happily take back their schools so that they can serve the local community, Budapest Mayor Gergely Karácsony said at a demonstration in Budapest on Sunday. Karácsony spoke at a protest organised in solidarity with demonstrations held nationwide by students, parents and the PDSZ teachers’ union. The demonstration started at Kalvin Square and progressed to the Budapest University of Technology and Economics on the Buda side of the Danube. Karácsony said the “dismantling of educational freedom started when schools were taken away from local authorities, then they were stripped of the free choice of textbooks, and now they are trying to take teachers away from the children.”
Referring to a part of Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s speech commemorating 1956 earlier in the day in western Hungary, in which he said “they don’t understand that Budapest isn’t identical to the country”, Karácsony said: “It is true that Budapest does not speak for the whole of Hungary, but neither does the government. There’s only one thing that is the equivalent of the country: schools, because teachers belong to all of us,” he said. The Budapest municipality originally planned to hold its commemoration of the 1956 anti-communist uprising in front of the university, “but the issue of education is more important now,” Karácsony said, noting that it yielded the space to the student protest.