This figure in Belarus is 641 people per 10,000 residents; only the Republic of Korea (699), the USA (683) and Chile (657) have more. Moreover, we’re considerably ahead of France (374 per 10,000), Sweden (496), Norway (495) and Austria (461).
Undoubtedly, such a high position in this prestigious ranking serves as vivid recognition of the successes of our domestic system of education. However, isn’t there a shift in favour of higher education to the detriment of secondary education? Don’t we have too many students wishing to receive only a precious ‘wallpaper degree’, rather than those really wishing to master a popular speciality?
The Deputy Chairman of the Standing Committee for Education, Culture and Science at the House of Representatives, Mikhail Volkov, confirmed that the question arises whether we need such a number of graduates with a higher education, “It’s necessary to raise the enrolment for working specialities into secondary special educational establishments. Not everyone should enter universities, only the best graduates — highly-motivated and with suitable knowledge. The work on their selection should start at school, and truly capable pupils, who are result-oriented, should continue studying at senior classes. It means that these classes should be the obligatory profile where corresponding subjects are taught at the enhanced level. In my opinion, it would be reasonable to introduce obligatory examinations after the 9th grade in only in two subjects — the Russian and Belarusian languages. However, if a pupil wishes to go further to the 10th grade, then they should pass two more exams in line with the future profile, e.g., mathematics and physics, or a foreign language and history. In this way, less motivated schoolchildren would enter special educational establishments, while we would receive prepared alumni which will enhance in the future the quality of specialists with higher education. Meanwhile, the accent should be placed on professions which are truly in demand countrywide, e.g., engineers, programmers, doctors and specialists with a higher education in the agro-industrial complex, rather than lawyers and economists, whose numbers are too great nowadays.”
By Anton Kostyukevich