08.01.2007
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Absurd proposal on tuition fees in Austria

Tuition fees will stay, but those students who do 60 hours or more of social work per semester will get their money back. This is the newest – and so far most absurd – outcome of the discussion about tuition fees, which are an issue in the negotiations towards a new government in Austria. Fees were introduced in 2001, accompanied with heavy critique from ESIB member, the Austrian National Union of Students (ÖH).

The promise of the Socialdemocratic Party, which won the governmental elections in October 2005, to abolish tuition fees, turns out to be an empty promise.

Not only are the students in Europe continuously against tuition fees, but this proposal will increase the percentage of students who have to work in bad conditions in order to finance their study – with a payment of 6,05 € per hour. Students would be forced to do low-cost work which is in no way connected to their studies, while the quality of social service will decrease through a lack of qualification of students in these fields. Also the question of how to administrate this system is completely unclear.

Today, January 8th, at 15:00, students are protesting on the Ringstraße in Vienna.

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