Schools reopen in Azerbaijan, but not for everyone
Full-time, in-person education in schools will resume in Azerbaijan on February 1.
So far, this will only apply to primary school students. But what about high school and university students? Can university students hope for lower tuition fees? The Minister of Education of Azerbaijan answered all of these questions.
Minister of Education of Azerbaijan Emin Amrullayev announced a gradual reopening of schools in the country after four months of lockdown.
Primary school students will be taught in person, in schools three times a week. On the remaining days, the teaching will be done online.
The same principle was introduced at the beginning of the school year – on September 15, 2020. However, a month later, it was decided to move to distance learning, due to the increase in the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases.
High school students and college students were never allowed to attend lessons or lectures. For them, the lockdown has been going on since March 2020.
Lockdown may return
A return to full-time, in-person learning is planned in several stages. An immediate return to the traditional education process for all could lead to a more rapid spread of the COVID-19 infection, Minister Amrullayev said.
“Should this happen, we would have to reintroduce the lockdown”, Amrullayev added.
What about older students?
During the first two weeks of February, a decision will be made on the educational process in universities and high schools.
“There is still no metro in Baku. A lot of older students, as well as teachers, use this particular type of public transport“.
Thus the minister of education argued for the postponement of the final decision.
The Ministry of Education has prepared lists of teachers who will be vaccinated in the first round.
16,698 teachers will be vaccinated in Baku, and 32,600 in the regions.
The high cost of tuition fees
The minister touched upon the high cost of tuition fees in universities.
This question from time to time becomes a topic of discussion on social media, with users demanding lower tuition fees due to the ongoing quarantine.
Their arguments are simple: they study online, university spending has fallen sharply, and the income of students’ parents has also dropped.
Minister Emin Amrullayev said that the average annual tuition fee in Azerbaijani universities is 2,500 manat [1,470 US dollars].
“Even in comparison with universities in other countries of our region, this is not such a large amount”, the minister stressed.
The minimum wage in the country is 250 manat [147 US dollars].