Greece is to merge its technological schooling institutes (TEIs) into universities in a sweeping reform of its better education system that could see the stages of masses of heaps of graduates upgraded.

The authorities have argued that the adjustments will create “synergies” and allow all institutions to assist pressure financial reconstruction.

But critics see it as a poorly organized reform designed to inflate the qualifications and enhance the salaries of many graduates beforehand of a wellknown election in October. Greece’s some distance-left Syriza authorities are presently trailing rivals inside the polls.

“It’s a hundred percentage political,” stated Loukas Vlahos, a physics professor at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki who has publicly criticized the changes. “There’s no question in my mind.”

Passed using 147 votes for to one hundred towards in Greece’s parliament, u . S .’s new better training regulation is predicted to open the door for present graduates of TEIs to improve their tiers to full college qualifications.

In Greece, Controversial Degree Shake-Up 1

This will permit the ones hired by way of the authorities, where pay is related to qualifications, to command higher salaries, said Vlahos. “It’s going to devalue the degrees of these who have [undertaken] substantial efforts to get into very prestigious faculties,” he stated. Universities typically require better examination ratings for entry than TEIs, he defined.

One newspaper anticipated there might be four hundred,000 such upgraded graduates, said Vasso Kindi, an assistant professor of philosophy at the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens. One hazard is that the ones working for the government will ask for backdated pay upgrades to mirror their diploma upgrades.

Kostas Gavroglou, Greece’s education minister, insisted that TEI stages might not be routinely upgraded. Instead, it would rely on elements inclusive of when graduates studied, he said, with the precise standards worked out over the following six months.

Another situation of critics is that the mergers have promoted TEI schools to full university professors. This has been performed “overnight, sweepingly, with none assessment of their credentials,” said Kindi.

The essential intention of the reform turned into to “benefit the assist of students, faculty and their households related to the technological institutions,” she argued.

Gavroglou instructed Times Higher Education that even though TEI faculty might end up university professors, they may be barred from responsibilities like Ph.D. Supervision if their report became now not deemed good enough by way of university assessment committees.

Had the mergers developed out of dialogue among universities and TEIs, they may have been “affordable,” Vlahos said. However, they have been pressured thru through the government. In April, the senate of Aristotle University warned that the plans lacked a feasibility study and a clear approach.

“We in no way saw a full plan,” stated Vlahos. He warned that the reforms will “smash” Greece’s technical training systems and force them collectively with its studies-oriented universities.

Kindi agreed. “The new enlarged universities find themselves with severa new departments whose instructional programs are not authorised and are nearly unknown. They may additionally overlap with present departments. They may additionally don’t have any relation to the profile of the university or the college they are attached to,” she said.

Gavroglou countered that in a few cases, TEIs’ research records outperformed universities. Yet, they nevertheless suffered from a public notion that they had been 2d-class institutions — a state of affairs the mergers could assist rectify.