Talks have started between the government and Hungarian churches on the organisation of religious education, which will optionally be offered during school hours as of September 2013, under new public education laws, the daily Magyar Nemzet reported on Saturday.
The new rules, requiring pupils to attend one ethics class per week or choose religious education organised by a church instead, will apply to all primary schools, including ones not run by the state, the paper said.
The ethics classes will be taught by teachers at the school, after they complete a 60-hour training session, but the religious education classes will be provided by church teachers from outside the school. Parents will be able to choose among classes offered by several churches registered in Hungary and choosing the materials for instruction will be in the church’s competence, too, the paper said.
Kornel Papp, head of the education office of the Hungarian Reformed Church, told the paper that talks with the state secretariat in charge of education addressed the practicalities of introducing the religious classes. Guidelines should be ready by the summer, the paper added.
State to fund nurseries for region’s ethnic Hungarians
Hungary has proclaimed 2012 as the year of Hungarian nurseries abroad and has allocated 100 million forints (EUR 337,000) to help operate Hungarian nursery classes in neighbouring countries with a Hungarian minority, Zsuzsanna Repas told a youth conference in Sovata, N Romania, on Saturday.
Hungary’s nation policy focuses on assisting a network of institutions, including schools and nurseries, Repas said, adding that concrete programmes linked to Hungary’s nation policy strategy are now being implemented.
The strategy aims at promoting the growth of Hungarian communities in numbers, as well as in an intellectual, economic and legal sense, Repas said.
“The borders of the Hungarian nation stretch as far as their institutional network can reach,” she said.
The Hungarian Youth Conference is regarded as the youth chapter of the Hungarian Permanent Conference (MAERT), an organisation of Hungarian parties in the Carpathian Basin.