School policy – Greens: still waiting because of oral Matura

The Greens have not had the last word in the discussion about the return to the compulsory oral Matura, which Education Minister Martin Polaschek announced for this year. “We have to wait and see how the next few weeks will develop,” said the green education spokeswoman Sibylle Hamann, referring to the corona situation in the schools in an interview with the “Wiener Zeitung”. One thing is certain for her: “Take out as much stress as possible.”

The SPÖ-affiliated Action Critical Student is again calling for a high school graduation strike this Wednesday. The Carinthian governor Peter Kaiser (SPÖ) is openly in favor of a voluntary instead of a mandatory oral Matura.

In addition to other simplifications due to the restrictions on teaching due to the pandemic, there was only one voluntary oral Matura in each of the past two years. For this year, however, Minister Polaschek, who has been in office since December, is again insisting that the oral matriculation examination in mid-June is mandatory. This is generally welcomed by AHS director representatives.

“The cuts in material are much more important,” emphasizes the green education spokeswoman Hamann for this year’s graduation. In addition, the final exams in the area of ​​vocational middle and higher schools (BMHS), which begin before the date of the written Matura in the AHS on May 2nd, must also be taken into account.

Youth representatives have the opposite opinion

In principle, the Greens are still in favor of a voluntary oral Matura. The green youth spokeswoman Barbara Neßler, Hamann’s club colleague, openly spoke out in the “Standard” for their retention because deviating from it made little sense in view of the psychological situation for young people in the corona crisis and the pressure to perform. She was responding to Secretary of State for Youth Claudia Plakolm (ÖVP), who committed to a mandatory oral Matura on Sunday in “ZiB2”.

From outside the turquoise-green coalition, the pressure on the Minister of Education will increase in the first semester of the 2021/22 school year, which is coming to an end. With Carinthia’s governor Kaiser, student representatives and the SPÖ-related campaign for critical students are now getting well-known marksmen’s help. As an education officer in the Carinthian state government, he considers the retention of the voluntary oral Matura to be justifiable in view of the ongoing corona restrictions, Kaiser said at a press conference in Klagenfurt on Tuesday. If, despite everything, the oral Matura should again be mandatory, the promised simplifications would have to be implemented in such a way that they support the high school graduates in their efforts to achieve a positive degree in the best possible way.

Facilitations in the fabric already fixed

The green education spokeswoman also refers to the simplifications already planned by Minister of Education Polaschek. This applies, for example, to the restriction of the subject areas by a third, and only those topics that have been covered in class should be examined.

After a warning strike last Tuesday, the AKS has announced a “major strike” for tomorrow, Wednesday. The federal student representation, which is dominated by the ÖVP-affiliated student union and is headed by Susanna Öllinger, is in favor of a voluntary oral Matura this year as well. However, she rejects a strike. (ett)

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