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Teachers from primary, secondary, and higher education institutions in Kosovo staged a one-day strike yesterday to demand compensation for teachers who worked in the parallel education system in the 1990s.
The head of the teacher’s union, Rrahman Jasharaj, said the government has failed to act on the union’s request to compensate teachers who worked for symbolic payments at the time, Kosovo’s Gazeta Express reports.
Back in those days, the authorities in Belgrade barred ethnic Albanians students – the majority in what was then a Serbian province – from certain educational facilities and ordered them segregated from Serb pupils. Albanian teachers rejected the nationalist Serbian curriculum, and some were fired or arrested, Prishtina Insight wrote in 2016.
Current law does not recognize the teachers’ work in the parallel system as professional experience, which affects teachers’ retirement pensions, Prishtina Insight reports.
Nataliya Apostolova (pictured), the head of the EU Office in Kosovo, said yesterday that public administration reforms and a reassessment of teachers’ salaries were needed in order to prevent situations like the teachers’ strike.
“Without true commitment of Kosovo to improve education, EU assistance is at stake. I call on all in Kosovo to demand reform and quality public education,” she said.
Apostolova also suggested that the politicization of education under harsh Serbian rule is still bedeviling the country.
“Politics should not have a role in appointing school directors, teachers, the Kosovo Accreditation Agency. The Ministry of Education should formulate education policies and ensure implementation,” Apostolova said at the presentation of an EU-funded report on the implementation of Kosovo’s 2017-2021 education strategy, Gazeta Express reports.
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The Moldovan Diaries is a multimedia, interactive examination of the country's ethnic, religious, social and political identities by Paolo Paterlini and Cesare De Giglio.
This innovative approach to story telling gives voice to ordinary people and takes the reader on the virtual trip across Moldovan rural and urban landscapes.
It is a unique and intimate map of the nation.