Statement of the Hungarian Rectors’ Conference

The Hungarian Rectors’ Conference (HRC) – in the presence of the executives of the National Union of Students in Hungary – has accepted the following statement during its meeting held on 3 April 2017 at the Budapest Business School.


The HRC was informed about the proposal to amend the Hungarian Higher Education Law from the press. We regret that in this case the HRC was not provided with the opportunity of referral or opinion


The polemics, which arouse based on the T/14686 proposal to amend the Hungarian Higher Education Law, has gained political dimensions leading far from the subject. The Presidency of the HRC, as a professional organization, does not wish to be part of political debates, therefore it only reflects on professional questions.


Respecting the deficiencies identified in the report of the Educational Authority, the HRC acknowledges the intention of the government to introduce more obvious regulation regarding the Hungarian degree programs of the foreign higher education institutions, and to require law-abiding behaviour based on the current legislation, which is also in the interest of the Hungarian higher education and the youth wishing to continue their studies at the university.


However, this regulatory requirement must not lead to the closure of institutions pursuing high-quality education and research activities, and the constriction of the international cooperation opportunities of the Hungarian higher education institutions.


Not detailing the administrative and legal differences between the Central European University (CEU) and the Közép-európai Egyetem (KEE), it is the interest of the HRC and the Hungarian universities to acknowledge and support the efforts of KEE in continuing its operation in Hungary, of course, in compliance with the accreditation requirements and other Hungarian legislative regulations. The HRC requests the affected parties to arrange disagreements through professional consultations, in which the HRC offers its help and forums.


The Presidency of the HRC considers it important that during the implementation of the amendment, professional values will not be wasted. Given the fact that the regulation may affect more higher education institutions and international treaties, the Presidency of the HRC suggests that the expected deadline of the compliance with the law should be adjusted to September 2019, so that all the involved actors have the sufficient time to fulfil the conditions.


The Presidency of the HRC is concerned about the extent of the negative connotation affecting the country that might also have a negative impact on the international relations of the Hungarian higher education. Since this communication is often based on partial information, the HRC requests the educational governance to make strong efforts in order to counteract these negative trends.

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