A curriculum which includes a departure from the Framework Curriculum other than the ones specified in Sections 2.2 through 2.5, Sections 3.2 through 3.7 and Section 11 herein, may be incorporated into a school’s educational programme, if it has been approved under the procedure identified in Appendix 2 of this Decree, and the National Centre for Assessment and Examination in Public Education (hereinafter referred to as ‘Examination Centre’) issued an official document to permit its application (hereinafter referred to as ‘application permit’).
The procedure specified in the foregoing paragraph (1) examines whether the Local Curriculum in question complies with the provisions of the Public education Act, whether it is suitable for underpinning a planned educational process, and whether it contains the objectives, content, requirements, major methods and tools of education.
The application permit procedure may be initiated by those who developed the curriculum, subject or subjects to be approved.
The application for the application permit and the attachments thereof must be filed with the Examination Centre.
Curricula and subjects with application permit may be incorporated into a school’s educational programme, if it has obtained a permit from the Examination Centre under the procedure identified in Appendix 2 of this Decree (hereinafter referred to as ‘introduction permit’). If a school uses a curriculum or subject with application permit, the parents and students over eleven years of age must be informed of this circumstance in writing.
The issuance of an introduction permit may be requested by the school which intends to incorporate a curriculum or subject with an application permit into its educational programme. The application for the introduction permit and the attachments thereof must be filed with the Examination Centre.
The permit procedure is to examine whether the specific conditions necessary for the introduction of a curriculum or subject with application permit are ensured, as specified by the curriculum register.
Requests for application permits and introduction permits may be judged under a single procedure leading to one decision on the issue of both permits, if the applications are filed together, by the same applicant.
The Examination Centre keeps a register of the curricula and subjects which have received an application permit (hereinafter referred to as ‘curriculum register’). Permits issued up to the end of the preceding year must be added to the register by 31 January every year. The curriculum register and its amendments as well as the complete register updated at least every three year must be published in the official bulletin issued by the Ministry of Education.
In accordance with the provisions of Appendix 2, the Curriculum Committee established by the National Public Education Council for this specific purpose takes part in the pre-decision work of the Examination Centre. The Curriculum Committee employs an expert for this work.
Experts must be selected from the National Experts’ Register or must hold an academic degree in the field in question, and participate in the training organised by the Examination Centre to prepare participants for evaluation work.
Whoever initiates a procedure in connection with the issue of the permits regulated in Sections 12 and 13, must pay a fee for the procedure. The fee to be charged is specified in Appendix 3 of this Decree.
The fee established herein must be paid in cash to the account of the Examination Centre (account no.: 10032000-00282637) managed by the Hungarian Treasury.
The fees paid into the above-mentioned account shall be the income of the Examination Centre, and an agreed part of this income must be transferred to the Ministry of Education. The collected fees shall be handled and recorded pursuant to the provisions of Government Decree 217/1998. (XII.30.) on the management of public accounts.
If the application is withdrawn, the paid fee may be reclaimed until the decision is issued. Reclaimed fees - reduced by the costs incurred in connection with the matter in question - must be refunded.
The collected fees may be used to cover the expenses related to the duties performed by the Examination Centre and the Ministry of Education in connection with the issue of permits identified herein and other controls, including personnel and material expenses.
The procedures governed by this Decree must apply the provisions contained by the Act IV of 1957 on the general rules of administrative procedures.
The development of new Framework Curricula shall be subject to the decision of the Minister of Education.
This Decree shall take effect on the eighth day following its proclamation.
The obligation of fee payment as per Section 15 (1) shall only be applicable for procedures initiated after this Decree has taken effect.
The provisions for students’ selection of subjects may be applied after the Local Curriculum has been introduced.
The schools which have developed Local Curricula based on the Minister’s permit - to introduce a unique approach or experiment - may apply these Local Curricula without application and introduction permit until 1 September 2003.
With this Decree coming into force
the following paragraph (6) shall be added to Section 21 of Decree 11/1994. (VI.8.) on the operation of educational institutions issued by the Ministry of Public Education (hereinafter referred to as ‘R’), and as a result the numbering of paragraphs (6) through (9) shall change to (7) through (10):
”(6) In grades one through four no student may be instructed to repeat a year or to pass a repeated examination on the grounds of poor performance in a foreign language”
Section 20.5 of R shall become void.
Budapest, August 2000.
Minister of Education
FOR YEARS 9 THROUGH 12 OF EDUCATION
IN GRAMMAR SCHOOLS
Objectives and tasks Grammar schools provide education with the purpose of expanding and strengthening general knowledge and laying the foundations of the acquisition of advanced knowledge. The fundamental objective of grammar schools is to prepare students for the secondary school leaving examination, as well as employment or higher education.
Grammar school provision aims at the transmission of knowledge which can be acquired through subject specific or interdisciplinary contents and activities, and it also aims at the development of the students’ communication and learning skills. Grammar schools constantly promote the sophisticated use of the mother tongue, the conservation of the natural and built environment, the adoption of values related to a healthy lifestyle and the development of an attitude to balance sustainable development with consumption. Provision encourages students to develop a need for what is called ‘lifelong learning’ including the skills and abilities required by this approach. By offering a range of content which facilitate personal development and a range of problem solving techniques, grammar schools teach students that, besides the fixed values, knowledge will always contain elements that transform, change and expand.
The mission of grammar schools is to enhance students’ awareness of their national and European identity, and to ensure the balance of their intellectual, emotional and physical development. Grammar schools train students to co-operate and collaborate with one another, and to develop the personal qualities, such as self-understanding, self-confidence, adaptability, the ability to endure failures, which are necessary for efficient conflict handling. Through these objectives, grammar schools promote the development of a constructive attitude within the students.
While teaching various subjects, grammar schools focus on skills development, and aim at linking theory with pragmatic, applied knowledge in a convincing manner. Within the available number of teaching hours, disciplinary knowledge is always transmitted together with references to possible applications. It is equally important to create coherence among the various disciplines, that is teachers must always consider the common content and the developmental tasks located at the intersection of subjects.
One of the major goals of grammar school provision is to promote thinking in context and in systems. Students must be made able to obtain, screen out and process information, and to find their way in this era dominated by information. The requirements and activities of grammar schools should be designed in a way which encourages students to form their own independent opinions based on their knowledge, to recognise and consider alternatives, and to make good decisions on the basis thereof.
Schools should offer students learning opportunities which are in line with their interests, abilities, achievements, and career choice by developing the proper school image, programme, local specifics and organising learning in a diverse way.
In the course of the education process students’ age specific characteristics are taken into account, and requirements are tailored to their age specific and individual maturity. Grammar school provision is aimed at personal development, relies on students’ emotional intelligence, counts on their creativity, and knowingly fosters the development of the foregoing.
The promotion of personal development focuses on the role of a responsible social actor and citizen, the preparation for a democratic way of life, which requires awareness of the interconnected nature of rights and obligations.
Aesthetic education is an essential part of shaping one’s personality is. Schools help students to make the greatest possible progress along this path, which starts with the simple act of recognising beauty and goes as far as the profound enjoyment of beauty. As far as training and education is concerned, in addition to arts, beauty should present in the act of everyday thinking, and in every school activity which is aimed at the shaping of daily environment.
The school’s own ethos, its way of life, the atmosphere and the environment which creates the backdrop of school life has a decisive impact on students’ personality.
With respect to behaviour, life style and social skills, it is vital to develop a moral responsibility for the self, the shared environment and the wider natural-social environment. While participating in activities organised by schools, learning, living other real-life situations, students can experience the importance of enforcing norms, such as respect for one’s fellow-students/fellow-citizens, active patriotism, openness towards the culture and traditions of other civilisations. In order to achieve this, grammar schools should give priority to those ways of learning which encourage students to take initiatives, co-operate effectively, and claim responsibility for one’s work and actions.
The task of grammar schools as centres of general education is to prepare students for the transition into a constantly changing world. Students need to be made aware of the democratic way of life of the Hungarian society, the process of European integration and Hungary’s participation in this process. Students need to be prepared for facing the phenomenon and challenges of cultural change and globalisation.
System of subjects and the required number of teaching hours
Teaching hour requirement in the various years of education
* Pursuant to Section 11.6 of this Decree he number of teaching hours allocated to subjects and modules marked with an asterisk may be rearranged, and used in another grade in the local curriculum.
HUNGARIAN LANGUAGE AND LITERATURE Years 9 through 12 of education
Objectives and tasks The aim of teaching Hungarian language and literature is to transmit solid and lasting values together with the knowledge of an emerging contemporary culture in the process of change. The goal is to strengthen students’ linguistic and cultural identity, and fill it with content; the subject is to help students develop a need for quality communication, the ability of making ethical and moral judgement, and learn about other cultures in the increasingly global world of the present and future. In-class activities should focus on raisinggenuine questions and providing credible answers as a reflection to students’ everyday life. Thus teachers of Hungarian language and literature must always remember to place the class in a context characterised by the spreading of information and communication technology, satellite television and video culture. This is a challenge with a yet unforeseeable impact on the intellectual significance of books as the primary medium of culture and information. Teachers must also remember that music and films play an important role in youth subculture. Cultural disadvantages, poverty, the lack of interesting personal experience may come to the surface at school as linguistic deficiency. The age group in question is simultaneously exposed to linguistic manipulation and the free flow of information.
The function of these subjects is to provide an effective and convincing system of contents and activities which improve the ability of self-expression, text interpretation and thinking, which are the prerequisites of learning. On the other hand these subjects should be the central scene for the enrichment of emotional life and the transmission of values.
The aim of teachingHungarian language is to develop the ability of linguistic interpretation and expression, and to strengthen and classify previously acquired knowledge about the role of language in social interaction and society, the relationship between language and thought, linguistic change in the present and past. The linguistic skills of a secondary school graduate is expected to contain the ability of understanding and creating oral and written texts together with their high-standard application in written and oral communication in various situations. Using the mother tongue in an exquisite and sufficiently conscious manner may be conducive to the acquisition of other modern languages.
During their literary education, students may learn to understand all types of texts better; they can be introduced to real life situations, decision making, moral dilemmas, problem solving techniques, behavioural patterns, values, thoughts and ideas they may build upon later, in the course of their own life. They can develop tolerance for diverse attitudes, lifestyles, social situations and convictions. They can explore the possibility of expression in their mother tongue, and can have a first hand experience of its beauty. They can acquire the knowledge which Hungarian and European culture makes constant references to. They are given the opportunity to recognise that there is an alternative to mass entertainment, and see the model of quality self-education. They may become more demanding in raising questions and giving detailed and precise descriptions of problems.
In a world, where ‘consensus’ has gained an unprecedented significance in personal relations, employment and success, the key objective and task of these subjects is to provide students an opportunity for becoming successful at school and at work. In a democratic society, the political, administrative, local governmental and voluntary sectors all demand citizens who can be made accountable for their decisions, who are able to articulate and assert their interests and values, and who are intellectually and psychologically mature. A further objective is to help students preserve the irreplaceable value of the mother tongue, personal interaction and individual thought in the information society of the 21st century.
Note: The Framework Curriculum of Hungarian language and literature offers two possible set of thematic structure and contents for years 11 and 12 of education in Hungarian language, and for years 9 through 12 of education in literature.
Developmental requirements The development of educated linguistic behaviour is a basic requirement of secondary level studies in Hungarian language and literature. Achieving the standard of communication expected at a particular age means the ability of co-operation with the other speakers’ partners, understanding and respecting others’ positions, defending and correcting views in all speech situations.
The prerequisite of this is the ability to recognise when communications breaks down and the ability to resume communication. Another prerequisite is a critical attitude, which makes it possible to notice false judgement and the intention to manipulate. Effective communication requires the successful co-ordination of verbal tools and phonetic tools on the level of sentence and text with the non-verbal expression (body language). It also means the appropriate selection of style and behaviour even in unknown private and public communicative situations. An important area of development is the expansion of knowledge about mass communication, i.e. extending the range of genres learnt at primary school; in addition to critical interpretation, mastering the creation of texts in a few journalistic genres.
In terms of raising the standard of text interpretation to the secondary level requirements includeimproving analytic skills by incorporating information learnt in the fields of descriptive grammar, text analysis and semantics; and extending analysis to cover the processing and interpretation of technical-scientific texts, journalism and public speech. This activity includes the ability to identify the linguistic-stylistic and rhetoric features of various texts, the exploration of the semantic structure and train of thought, the interpretation of overt and covert meaning. Text interpretation must include activities, such as the investigation of relations among texts, the comparison of different approaches to a single problem, alternative interpretations of a work of art, and the formation of individual views.
The continuous development of text creation skills refers to the requirement of precise wording as well as encouraging the use of individual style to express inner personality. At this level, the ability of understanding and creating texts should be extended to the individual’s every oral and written utterance in social interactions, the private and public sphere and all communicative functions (informative-descriptive, expressive, assertive, imperative, connotative). In addition to the continuous improvement of the forms of communication practised earlier, it is of overriding importance, that students practise how to express arguments in speech and writing alike. It remains important to provide a range of opportunities for creative writing, such as the description of personal experience and images in the mind, playful text transformation, practising journalistic genres, and compiling studies or papers, which may demand longer preparation. The independent use of a range of different analytical methods ensures an increasingly deeper understanding of the various intellectual, moral and aesthetic features of literary works. On the other hand, advanced expression is the key to demonstrating personal views and experiences properly.
A crucial component within the development of learning skills is developing an ability to make contact and to co-operate with peers or texts; understanding how language use, thinking, behaviour and the expression of emotions are interrelated. Another objective in this field is improving cognitive skills through activities, i.e. the application of a chronological approach, a problem-solving approach, analytical techniques revealing the various levels of meaning, the logical procedures of induction, deduction, inference, analysis and synthesis. This is closely related to the regular use of the library, the use of the different media, one’s the ability to find one’s way in the world of information independently, creatively and with sufficient sensitivity to problems; to exploit every opportunity for self-development in an intelligent and constructive manner.
Knowing the life and system of Hungarian language on a secondary level means that the basic requirement is to recognise grammatical, narrative, semantic, stylistic-rhetoric and orthographic features independently; to be able to define these concepts, and to apply them knowingly. This is supplemented by what is learnt about the relationship between language and society, and linguistic stability and change. This knowledge is the basis of observing linguistic norms, making judgements on correct language use, participating in active language conservation, and mastering one’s own linguistic performance. An important component of linguistic education in the mother tongue is familiarity with the origins of the Hungarian language, its relations to other languages, the milestones of its historical development, awareness and experience of the inseparability of Hungarian language and Hungarian culture. At this stage, it becomes possible to use the knowledge of the mother tongue in foreign language learning.
Concerning the relationship between literature and the reader, it remains a requirement to develop a deeper understanding of what sort of experiences, emotions and meaning is transmitted by literature to individuals and to the public. There is a constant need to make the study of literature an enjoyable activity by trying to establish links between in-class activities and students’ personal problems in life. It is necessary to discuss literary experiences in a factual as well as a creative and playful manner. On the secondary level, students are expected to view works in a wider context, e.g. to compare the variations of a theme and its various adaptations by other branches of art. They are required to investigate the impact and interpretations of a work in the age when it was written, and to look at how it can be linked to the work of the contemporaries, and how posterity judges the work in question. This broader literary knowledge includes the ability to recognise some of the outstanding themes and touch points of Hungarian literature as they appear in works with various worldviews and attitudes, in topics like life and death, closer and wider natural and social environment, friendship, love, national traditions, emotional-intellectual bondage, Hungarian and European existence.
Literary education has several components. It primarily means the ability to understand the meaning, moral content, aesthetic elements of literary works, and to talk and write about it by using the learnt concepts. Part of this knowledge is the recognition of continuity and change in the nature of literature, familiarity with the history of Hungarian literature and the links between Hungarian and European literature. It also includes some basic knowledge of the major historical styles and genres, and the ability to talk about the literary career of a few Hungarian classics, to highlight the milestones of their lives and to present literary portraits of other authors. An important supplement to literary studies is learning about the famous memorial sites, in particular exploring the links between literature and the region and the community.
Judgement, moral and aesthetic sensibility are the dominant features of a person standing on the doorstep of adulthood. In this respect the study of Hungarian language and literature is crucial for the improvement of logical thinking and the continuous development of self-knowledge and self-criticism. If the discussion of literary works gives way to personal opinion, students’ sensitivity to truth, understanding and empathy as values will increase, the perception of moral and emotional conflicts will become easier, and students will be tuned to positive feelings, joy and beauty.