Fight with organised education part two
Adelina Marini, 26 May 2009
Maybe this would sound a little bit exaggerated but I'm absolutely convinced that if the process for high school exams application was simple and logical, this country wouldn't have had any problems with its development. Why? Because a second day in a row I'm trying to learn the truth about what's necessary for applying for the high school exams and in that process of trying, I get more and more heart-breaking information, of course with the necessary loss of time and nerves. After yesterday I found out that the application forms will be distributed among the pupils at school (for those that are happy to study in a school-nest), then I found out that actually the application forms cannot be taken out the school and must be fulfilled at the school. That's what the principal announced early in the morning.
Of course I phoned the Regional Education Inspectorate for Sofia to ask if this was actually possible to be true. Initially I was told that such a thing cannot be true because actually it wouldn't matter if you take an application from school or print it from the Internet (for this a little later) and fill it at home and then file it at the school. But later the Inspectorate confirmed. And the reason? The reason is that there are not enough copies of the application forms because they make economies of paper, there is no money for many copies and that is why the application forms shouldn't be taken out the school. But, every parent could print it from the Internet. Now, it's the 21st century after all, and I've decided that I will use the Internet. I realise that the budget is in trouble now because of the crisis, the money for the educational system are paid at 75 % instead of the 90 % planned and therefore it wouldn't be a problem for me to spend some money to print the forms. And I'm happy because I have a printer at home so there's not problem at all. But from the Internet site of the Ministry of education I cannot understand of all almost 10 pages with similar content which ones I need nor how should I fill it.
In the meantime my son called me a second time. An addition to the news that the application forms shouldn't be taken out the school there's another thing - they cannot fulfill the forms at school unless they've paid the fee for the exams. Obviously I will have to say good bye to all my very important professional tasks and go to the school-nest, find out which is the bank account and then go back and fill in the form. I wrote down everything and went to the bank.
Next lines are for those Bulgarians who experience financial difficulties and, probably they are forming a large group. I would just insert here the following statement just to underline how illiterate we were instructed how much we have to pay for the exams. For example: Bulgarian language and Math exam - 4 levs (2.05 euro). Written like one gets the impression that both exams cost 4 levs and the truth is that they cost 4 levs each. Anyway. At the bank I found more shocking news. Of course because of the crisis, the price for the bank transfer is 6 levs (3.07 euro) and in some banks - 10 levs (5.13 euro) notwithstanding if you transfer 2 levs or 2 mn. And the bank account of the Regional Education Inspectorate is in the UBB bank, but if you think that the internal transfer is still free of charge - you're wrong - it's 3 levs (1.53 euro). I just don;t want to think about the e-banking for which I would also pay a transfer fee but until the school finds out that I had paid, the deadline for application would have expired.
As it is written in the instruction in front of the school-nest, you can pay for all exams with one bank transfer which will save you some extra expenses. With the note from the bank you go back to the school where, to my surprise, I was being welcome in a very kind way. I was being explained that I don't need to take the application form at home because it is just 1 page which is easily filled in with the very kind help of the staff at the school. Of course, it is not quite clear whether this staff - all teachers at the school - are being paid for extra work.
Finally, I have the so wanted application form filed. Now we're waiting for the 11th of June when we will find out where my son has been distributed to hold the exam. And then - then it would be Part III.