During Monday’s presentation of the education system audit for 2021, Miroslav Hřebecký, program director of EDUin, recommended the voluntary admission tests. According to him, the tests of Cermat, which organizes the single entrance examinations, negatively affect teaching in primary schools and increase inequalities in education.
“The main recommendation at present is that the admissions procedure be handed over to the sole responsibility of the principal of each secondary school, subject to the possibility that it would be appropriate to support other forms of candidate assessment. And for that it is suitable for school,” Hřebecký said.
He pointed out that entrance exams are currently taken not only in high schools, but also in other high school diplomas, where, for example, there is no over-application. The single entrance exam must currently represent 60% of the secondary entrance exam.
EDUin does not want to cancel them completely
However, according to Hřebecký, the educational society EDUin does not demand the abolition of uniform entrance exams. “If anyone, especially a high school, wants to keep taking these tests, let them,” he said.
According to him, these tests should be improved on the didactic level, but EDUin considers them better than tests that schools could create “at home”.
Therefore, according to the organization, schools could use, for example, general studies or other subject prerequisite tests, interviews, practical and talent exams, results of student work or psychodiagnostics as an alternative to uniform admissions. “In addition to Czech and mathematics, Cermat could also offer tests in foreign languages,” says Hřebecký.
More applications and electronically?
According to Hřebecký, EDUin would also welcome a change from the two-application system to an algorithm system that would allow applicants to submit more applications. According to him, such a system is used by some Western states. In it, the candidate sets the schools preferences and the algorithm evaluates based on the entrance exam results where the student can be accepted. Currently, candidates apply for a maximum of two schools, with both exam dates giving them a better result.
In addition, according to Hřebecký, Cermat should assess how new high school students do, who later graduate – more specifically, how we were able to “hit” student selection in student selection in terms of how they will finish their own high school diploma.
“Concretely, I called for the first step in the analysis of Cermat receptors to transparently calculate the so-called predictive validity. It expresses whether the test (here the Uniform Entrance Examination, JPZ) as a whole measures with sufficient accuracy and whether the test result correctly predicts the main interest for which the test is performed. In the case of JPZ, therefore, future success in secondary education,” Hřebecký clarified for Novinky, adding that experts question the predictive validity of JPZ in relation to graduation results.
According to him, we are not able to choose those who obtain the best diploma among us, which indicates that the current framework of entrance examinations is not effective.
He added that it would also be good to digitize the receipt of examination requests. Education Minister Petr Gazdík said last week that electronic applications for uniform entrance exams could be introduced from next year.
At the moment, students can only register for entrance exams using a printed form, which they submit to the school in person or by post. “Ms. Cermat’s (Michaela Kleňhová) manager has been ordered to resolve the application. He has until September or October. The electronic application should be submitted next year,” Gazdík said.
As for the tests themselves, he previously said he would like to digitize the tests. They are now distributed in schools thanks to a specific system, whose Cermat contract expires this year. According to the minister, it will have to be extended for about two years before another solution can be found. “We now have two years to come up with an entirely new system for the 21st century whose students will graduate in 2024, no later than 2025,” he said.
According to him, it is the single admissions that will have to change, at the same time as the revision of the framework educational programs (FEP). “The current Unified Entrance Examination only tells how the child is at the moment compared to other children of the same age. But we need to know what kind of path the child has taken. For this, the point tests Nodals should be used, for me at least in 5th and 9th grade,” he described.
He would like this test to be used for high school admissions as well. “How, we will certainly discuss it and I will certainly be stoned by my suggestions from some experts,” he concluded.
Relief from Czech high school graduates for Ukrainians?
Gazdík also believes that in the coming year the content of the high school diploma for students who fled the Russian invasion from Ukraine and do not speak Czech will also be adapted at least in Czech.
“I certainly don’t expect next year’s students who start from the fourth year of our secondary schools, for example, to graduate fluently in Czech next year and know all the terms” , did he declare.
He recalled that the government had promised to adapt the final examinations to the 21st century. According to him, various proposals appear. For example. agrees with the Charles University Education 21 think tank model that the examination should also include a postgraduate thesis. He is not sure about the introduction of a vocational high school diploma.
“What I want to know is what will be the opinion of employers, how will they take it, what is the difference between a leaving certificate and an apprenticeship certificate,” he said. . He pointed out that STAN’s election platform called for the introduction of a state high school diploma as a minimum of high school, which could be done several times during the study period. “That’s what I prefer,” he said.
Gazdík: 5.2 billion needed for the integration of schoolchildren by August
According to Gazdík, 5.2 billion crowns will be needed to integrate refugees into schools in the Czech Republic by the end of August. According to him, the money will be needed to provide more workers in education, adaptation groups, Czech language courses or language camps during the holidays. The station wants to tap into the state budget, regional reserves, European or Norwegian funds. According to him, the way of financing the integration of refugees from September will be decided in May at the earliest – depending on the situation.
Gazdík has previously stated that approximately CZK 17 billion will be needed for the integration of refugees. According to him, this amount is based on the current average cost per pupil and on the assumption that 120,000 refugees would enter Czech schools.
According to the Minister, it is not possible to estimate how long the education system will deal with the integration of refugees. He pointed out that 300,000 refugees in the Czech Republic represent almost three percent of the population and that a similar situation had never happened before. “All the studies on migration say that we are able to integrate two percent well, three of them may already have problems,” he said.
At the beginning of April, the Minister wants to submit a draft measure to the government so that the refugees learn Czech as soon as possible.
At the end of March, the Ministry of National Education, Youth and Sports will also discover the evolution of the number of pupils in schools. He wants to adapt school funding to statistics. According to Gazdík, a similar data collection should be repeated in May.
“At the end of March, principals will have 14 days to recalculate pupils and teachers. In mid-April, we will publish the actual number of additional children, and based on the current education law, there will be an increase in regional reserve funds, which we will supplement,” he explained last week during the parliamentary interpellations session.
As he announced before the outbreak of war in Ukraine, he would also like to discuss the possibility of adding funds for non-teachers in education later this year. However, it is not sure to succeed. However, to keep teachers’ salaries at 130% of the average salary, he said the money “has to be” even when it comes to refugees. He wants to keep the promises of the government which, in the program, has undertaken, among other things, to increase education spending to 5.2% of GDP.