‘The educational reform isn’t yielding the expected results’: bill on rejecting Unified State Exam introduced to State Duma

‘The educational reform isn’t yielding the expected results’: bill on rejecting Unified State Exam introduced to State Duma
Photo: Максим Платонов

State Duma deputies from the Liberal and Democratic Party of Russia, the Communist Party of Russia and the Fair Russia — for Truth party introduced a bill to reject the Unified State Exam in favour of traditional state exams, the bill is available in the Duma database.

The bill envisages making some changes to Federal Law on Education in the Russian Federation. In case of being adopted, the law can be valid from 1 January 2025. Results of United State Exams will be valid during the next four years after sitting the exams and can be accepted in universities as admission exams.

“It is obvious nowadays that the educational reform that started with the introduction of Unified State Exams isn’t yielding the expected results, which should also be manifested in a better quality of knowledge and accessibility of higher education, an explanatory note to the document indicates.

As a result of introducing the USE, parents’ expenses shifted to the market of tutors, while the corruption component did from admission commission to Olympiads. Maxim Platonov / realnoevremya.ru. Максим Платонов / realnoevremya.ru

The deputies noted that for effective preparation for Unified State Exams, students have to additionally study with tutors whose services are often not affordable for many families due to the high price. Moreover, graduates who scored high are often left without seats in universities because of winners and medallists of school Olympiads.

“The content of the Unified State Exam is far from the school programme. For an effective preparation for the USE, a student has to additionally hire tutors whose services are expensive and not affordable for many parents,” the explanatory note stresses.

In some cases university professors who organise these Olympiads often prepare school students for the Olympiads for money.

“Many specialists dealing with science and culture, teachers and parents claim that the testing in general cannot determine the level of knowledge, while the educational process turns into “tuning” into the exam. Due to the great difficulty of questions and tasks of the USE, the workload on the students increased,” the deputies write.

Russia’s education watchdog responded to the initiative immediately.

“There is now no country in the country with a different approach to evaluate a student’s knowledge besides an exam. We constantly improve the current USE model, it is working. Russia’s education watchdog is open to constructive offers,” said head of the watchdog Anzor Muzayev.

The USE was introduced in 2009. It has been repeatedly offered to cancel it. However, the education watchdog has been against it, while Russia’s Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin called the USE “social lift.”

Renata Valeyeva

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