“No area has seen as many government experiments as the education system,” “Hraparak” writes in a commentary on the start of the new academic year in Armenia. “A 12-year education cycle, a pre-term and unprecedented licensing of school principals, a new system of exams, the structural separation of secondary and high schools. All of these actions have been accompanied by noise and protests.” The paper says that the government has failed to substantiate those actions, keeping the public in the dark about its education policies.
“The main problem of our public education is not the lack of funds,” editorializes “Aravot.” “Nor is it the fact that they have increased the length of study in schools to 12 years and divided it into two stages. The main problem is that we don’t know for what purpose we give our children education … Many parents pay for their children not to study. They don’t regard education as a tool that will earn the children’s place in the future life. Such parents waste their money and children’s time on some meaningless and unclear activities.” The paper believes that a return to the Soviet-era education practices and standards would not solve this problem.
“Hayots Ashkhar” reprints former President Robert Kocharian’s interview with Nagorno-Karabakh’s state television which was dedicated to the 20th anniversary of Karabakh’s declaration of independence from Azerbaijan. “I don’t accept the view that Karabakh does not take part in [Armenian-Azerbaijani] negotiations,” says Kocharian. “Karabakh does participate in negotiations. Karabakh simply doesn’t participate in one section of the negotiation process: meetings between the presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan. The negotiating process is much broader, and Nagorno-Karabakh has full-fledged negotiations with the co-chairs of the OSCE Minsk Group.”
“I have no doubts that Karabakh will participate in the negotiations in full,” says Kocharian. “Just how long the process will last is difficult to predict. But time undoubtedly works in our favor.”
Gagik Jahangirian, a senior member of the Armenian National Congress (HAK), assures “Haykakan Zhamanak” that the opposition force has benefited from the stalled dialogue with President Serzh Sarkisian’s administration. Jahangirian suggests that the dialogue has been scuttled by government elements that he says fear that they could be “sacrificed” by Sarkisian as a result of “civilized negotiations” with the HAK.
Commenting on the arrest of road police chief Margar Ohanian, “Yerkir” says the police service has been seriously discredited. “Today it is targeted by both the authorities, despite invaluable services provided to them, and the opposition which by driving police officers into illegal actions … has been trying to use them as a tool in their dealings with the authorities,” says the paper.