Dr. Irén Gábrity Molnár: The Educational Level of the Vajda-Hungarian Students, as the Condition of the Substitution of the Hungarian Intelligentsia

The Vajda-Hungarians’ participation in education lags behind the majority nation. This lagging behind results unschooling/illiteracy of Hungarians and decline of the intelligentsia. The rate of Vajda-Hungarians to the total number of population is 14 per cent. In comparison with this the youth in the particular age-groups and school levels, they log behind the majority population. According to it, the level of education of Hungarians decreases in comparison with the majority population, therefore the chances for finding jobs are also lower, since if the number of specialists and intelligentsia is getting lower, the labour market unmercifully selects them.

We cannot be satisfied with the division of Hungarian students by educational language, because if 20 per cent of them starts primary school level in Serbian language, then 60-70 per cent of them cannot take examination in their mother language on higher education level, and then the number of specialists learning in Hungarian decreases. Moreover, these young people – in their identity consciousness (Hungarian language culture, comprehensive knowledge of our history) have fewer chances to remain to be members of the Hungarian intelligentsia and to be active in their mother– Hungarian language.
The chosen high school „canalises” the young people, either for further education, creative work, or executive work, work requiring medium-level skills. Only 19,68 per cent of Hungarian high-school students attend grammar schools, 39,46 per cent attend four-year vocational secondary schools, 39,25 per cent attend three-year vocational secondary schools, 0,67 per cent attend two-year vocational secondary schools and 0,92 per cent attend vocational secondary schools for arts. The aim of talent fostering grammar-schools opened in 2003 is to promote elite-training of Hungarians, and to hinder moving talents abroad after the primary school.
It is clear from the empirical data that the determining majority of young people wants to study, and acquire practical knowledge in their mother language. Data, according to which the Hungarians like choosing fields that are taught in Hungarian (e.g. pedagogy), and technological and economical education, also confirm this. Although, Hungarian-speaking high-school teachers, doctors, bankers, managers, psychologists, sociologists; generally speaking, the intelligentsia in humanities, are lacking.
The Vajda scientific intelligentsia and its work need to be raised to such European level that joins it to the life of international academy at any time. All that is needed to realise this is to build a network of Hungarian higher education institutions – either within the existing state system, or following the Act on Higher Education that should be in effect at the beginning of 2004 – to establish a new university or Hungarian sections.