6.2 Administration and governance
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In Hungary, from 2022, the main body responsible for public education is the Ministry of Interior (Belügyminisztérium) and under it, the State Secretariat Responsible for Public Education (formerly, the Ministry of Human Capacities was responsible but the Ministry was terminated in 2022).
Furthermore, for vocational and adult training and for higher education,
- the State Secretary Responsible for Innovation and Higher Education (Innovációért és Felsőoktatásért Felelős Államtitkár) under the Ministry for Culture and Innovation (Kulturális és Innovációs Minisztérium),
- especially for higher education, the Deputy State Secretary of Higher Education (Felsőoktatásért Felelős Helyettes Államtitkár)
- especially for vocational training, the Deputy State Secretary of Vocational Training (Szakképzésért Felelős Helyettes Államtitkár),
- the Ministry of Agriculture (Agrárminisztérium), and
- the Ministry of Defence (Honvédelmi Minisztérium) also take part in educational tasks.
The most notable background institution of the Ministry for Culture and Innovation is the National Office of Vocational Education and Training and Adult Learning (Nemzeti Szakképzési és Felnőttképzési Hivatal).
An important actor in education policy is the Educational Authority (Oktatási Hivatal) which is subordinate to the Ministry of Interior. It is responsible for all issues related to study, from entry into primary school, to attainment of the highest degree (with the exception of adult training) and also manages the development of printed and digital textbooks for public education.
Public actors in higher education
Hungarian Rectors' Conference
In Hungary, there are two national organisations that represent actors of higher education. The Hungarian Rectors' Conference [Magyar Rektori Konferencia (MRK)] provides representation for the entire Hungarian higher education institution system. The board consists of heads of institutions and is responsible for:
- representation of higher education institutions,
- protecting their interests, and
- participating in the performance of public tasks.
National Organisation of Student Self-governing Bodies
The organisation for the representation of students is the National Organisation of Student Self-governing Bodies [Hallgatói Önkormányzatok Országos Konferenciája (HÖOK)]. It is organised and functions on a democratic basis by the students' self-government of higher education institutions. In order to improve Hungarian higher education, it carries out various activities:
- activities linked to higher education and youth policy,
- maintains contact with Hungarian students in the neighbouring countries,
- initiates legislation to carry out these tasks,
- forms opinion,
- organises conferences and professional lectures (HÖOK, Rólunk). (For more information see sub-chapter 5.3 Youth representation bodies.)
Important organisations of teachers
Three organisations from the side of the teachers are worth mentioning, which have a role to play in education policy:
- the Democratic Trade Union of Teachers (Pedagógusok Demokratikus Szakszervezete),
- the Trade Union of Teachers (Pedagógusok Szakszervezete)
- the National Teachers Chamber (Nemzeti Pedagógus Kar).
The Democratic Trade Union of Teachers (Pedagógusok Demokratikus Szakszervezete) was founded in 1986 and its activities include education and labour interest reconciliation, pedagogical representation, and legal assistance.
The Trade Union of Teachers (Pedagógusok Szakszervezete) is the oldest and, according to its membership, the largest sectoral trade union in Hungary. Its job is, among others, to provide advocacy and protection of the interests of teachers and educators.
The National Teachers Chamber (Nemzeti Pedagógus Kar) is a local government body of teachers working in public educational institutions maintained by state and local governments. It was established to support
- the organization of the school community service and to operate the related advisory and information system,
- the development of professional-ethical standards of the pedagogical profession,
- the union of the teachers,
- the recognition of teachers, and
- the pedagogical representation of teachers in public education (A Nemzeti Pedagógus Kar Alapszabálya).
For more information on the school community service, see sub-chapters 2.1 General context and 5.7 “Learning to participate” through formal, non-formal and informal learning
Non-public actors taking part in the development of policies in education
The Trade Union of Employees in Higher Education
The Trade Union of Employees in Higher Education [Felsőoktatási Dolgozók Szakszervezete (referred hereinafter to as FDSZ)]
'is an independent organisation safeguards higher education employees' interests according to laws and any other legislative acts. FDSZ and its institutional organisations have rights to represent their members' interests on forums where governmental goals are defined, draft legislative acts are prepared and decisions are taken - all concerned to education and research in higher education. Furthermore, it develops and maintains relationships with home and international organisations dealing with education and working life by representing public servants' interests employed in higher education.'
FDSZ is the third largest Union in Hungary, and its members are from higher education institutions (teachers, administration staff, researchers, support personnel, technical assistant staff, teachers at preparatory schools of universities and, also retired higher education staff members).
General distribution of responsibilities
The main responsible body for the maintenance of the schools is the Klebelsberg Institution Maintenance Centre [Klebelsberg Központ (referred hereinafter to as KLIK)]. KLIK decides on the
- financial management competence,
- termination of the public education institution, or
- about the transfer of the maintenance rights,
- the name of the institution,
- its budget,
- rules of charges,
- tuition fees, and
- social discounts.
The KLIK maintains relationship with the responsible minister and make recommendations on the above mentioned decisions and carries out tasks related to statistical data collection. KLIK is organised into 60 educational district centres and that means the distribution of the maintenance responsibilities. The educational district centre is responsible for appointing the employees of the public educational institution (Klebelsberg Központ, Tankerületi Központok). The head of the institution is responsible for the operation of the institution. For more detailed information about the tasks of the KLIK, see Eurydice (sub-chapter 2.7 Administration and Governance at Local and / or Institutional Level)
Educational institutions founded by national minority self-governments or churches, as well as private schools and kindergartens maintained by cities may continue to operate. In their case, the maintainer is to determine their rules for operation.
Generally, those ministries and institutions have to cooperate in education issues which are mentioned at the beginning of this sub-chapter. Especially for the vocational training, the Ministry for Culture and Innovation and its background institution, the National Office of Vocational Education and Training and Adult Learning (Nemzeti Szakképzési és Felnőttképzési Hivatal) are responsible together. Their tasks are
- to make decisions,
- maintenance at an operational level.
Cooperation in the frame of national strategies
The Public Education Strategy 2021 - 2030 (Köznevelési stratégia 2021 - 2030) mentions the cross-sectoral cooperation. From 2022 onwards, the Ministry of Interior (Belügyminisztérium) is the main body responsible for implementing the Strategy.
There are several other organisations involved in the tasks:
- the background institutions of the Ministry,
- the central and/or the local governmental bodies [mainly the Educational Authority (Oktatási Hivatal), Klebelsberg Centre (Klebelsberg Központ) and the Educational district centres (Tankerületi Központok)],
- other state institutions and
- private institutions. [For more information on the Strategy, please see chapter 6.3. Preventing early leaving from education and training (ELET)]
One of the main areas of the former Public Education Development Strategy (Köznevelés-fejlesztési stratégia), (have been in effect between 2014-2020), was to fight against early school leaving without qualifications. The Action Plan (cselekvési terv) of the Strategy stated that many sectors [(e.g. the Ministry of Finance, the Klebelsberg Centre, the National Office of Vocational Education and Training and Adult Learning and other non-public actors] were responsible for the implementation of the Strategy, and therefore, cooperation between sectors, as well as the realisation of a coordinated, integrated implementation-supporting cooperation, was also important eariler.
Cooperation in other youth-related fields
Legal changes in recent years have required and also presupposed many 'sectoral' cooperation, for example, due to the legal division of responsibilities in the secondary school structure, where vocational training was transferred to the Ministry of Culture and Innovation (meanwhile the Ministry of Interior is responsible for public education).
Similarly, the operation of other government sectors (ministries, such as the Ministry of Defence, Ministry of Interior) as the maintainers of institutions is also a field where such cooperation take place. In addition, there is a need for cooperation for the compulsory community service for high school students in social, health, environmental areas etc. (Oktatási Hivatal, Az iskolai közösségi szolgálat (IKSZ) fogalmai és alapelvei)
Another examples are the thematic weeks (see sub-chapter 9.4 Raising awareness about global issues), when providers and employers work with educational institutions.
Examples can also be found for when a company carries out school maintenance tasks (Audi Hungaria Schule Győr).
In the field of talent management, there are also examples of sectoral cooperation, like in the case of the Genius Loci award (Genius Loci díj).
Dual training in higher education
Due to the positive results of foreign dual training and domestic initiatives the government has introduced the dual training model in Hungary. The dual-type training programme is a special practice-oriented higher education course with the cooperation of higher education and economic operators aiming students to gain practical knowledge during their academic years. (Duális Diploma)
According to the information provided by the Ministry in 2019, the following institutions take part in the cross-sectoral cooperation:
- the Ministry for Culture and Innovation (Kulturális és Innovációs Minisztérium),
- the Dual Training Council (Duális Képzési Tanács) consits of members of professionals from Ministries, from Higher Educational Institutions and the heads of the workplaces which take part in the dual training,
- the Department Responsible for Dual Trainings in the Educational Authority (Oktatási Hivatal Duális Képzések Osztálya) which provides the secretariat tasks of the Dual Training Council and therefore cooperate with all of the above-mentioned institutions.