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Gov't signs agreement on dual education system

The government and the Hungarian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MKIK) on Thursday signed an agreement on tasks related to the introduction of a dual education system in Hungary, one that combines apprenticeships and vocational training.

Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said before signing the agreement that it would "help young people find their way directly into workplaces rather than job centres or unemployment".

Orbán said the dual education system would be introduced when he unveiled an economic action plan in October.

The dual education system is expected to be introduced in Hungary in 2012, but the test stage will start already from September of 2011, state secretary in charge of education Rózsa Hoffmann said at the government spokesman's press conference on Thursday. With the introduction of the system, the school-leaving age will be lowered to 17 from 18, she added.

The main idea behind the dual education system is that vocational training lasts three years, but a bigger emphasis is placed on practical training - possibly even in an apprenticeship - already in the first year, said state secretary for employment policy Sándor Czomba. The aim of the change is to give students marketable vocational skills and "re-establish the prestige of manual labour", he added. (MTI-ECONEWS)