YEREVAN (Noyan Tapan)– The National Assembly adopted the law "On Education" in its second and final reading on April 14. This is the first law stipulating principles of government policy in the sphere of education to be adopted in Armenia after the country gained independence in 1991–even though many bills bearing identical names have been discussed over the past nine years.
"This is the initial step towards the formation of our policy in the sphere of education," Minister of Education and Science–Levon Mkrtchian said in comment on the passage of the law. According to the minister–"more complex preparations regarding the law on universal education are possible as well. Also–it is necessary to work on ways to further develop and successfully implement the new reform–primarily the manner of licensing and accreditation which have been developed and now should be submitted to the government for approval".
The law on education will go into effect immediately–with the exception of transitional provisions related to university liberties according to which officials at institutions of higher educations are to be elected–and the provision on salaries for teachers that is to take effect next budget year. Under the law–the salaries of teachers cannot be below the average salary of an employee of a tax-paid establishment. According to the minister–this is a serious progress both financially and morally that will enhance the role of teachers in society and the criterion of the government’s estimation.