PEP X cancelled

For personal reasons, Jovicevici have decided with regret that they must cancel tenth cycle of workshops within Peace Education Programme (PEP). Jovicevici have offered PEP for several years as donators and volunteers, within the Centre for Civic Education (CCE) educational programme «Contemporary Tendencies of Critical Thought». Thanks to their generosity and efforts, over 500 people in Montenegro have enjoyed the popular PEP programme for free.This includes many theachers who are active within the formal education system. Jovicevici apologise to those who applied for PEP X, who were genuinely looking forward to attending, and hope that they will have understanding.

If Jovicevici decide again to start organising PEP, the CCE will with pleasure continue cooperation with them and in that manner also contribute to the widening of spectrum of alternative education programmes offerred in Montenegro.

First European café for young people

Roman Hloben, ambassador of Republic of Slovakia in Montenegro, was the guest of the first European café for young people, organised by the Centre for Civic Education (CCE) in cooperation with the European Alternatives, where he spoke about the “EU – 60 years after the Treaty of Rome”.

Ana Nenezić, programme coordinator of Europeanisation and democratisation at the CCE, opened the European café for young people and pointed out that “European unity began as dream of a few, and grew into a hope of many. In times when the EU is going through numerous crisis and internal process of reforms, one should underline the achieved results, as well as the values which gathered member states”. She reminded that Brexit has shook the foundations of EU, along with many other challenges, but that it has also “contributed to more decisive and firm stand on changes that are necessary and that will make the EU stronger. Signing of Rome declaration by 27 leaders of member states, European Council, European Parliament and European Commission precisely on the 60th anniversary of the signing of Treaty of Rome constitutes the move in that direction”. Nenezić assessed that position of Montenegro, which is deeply into accession negotiation process and has achieved certain results, “will depend greatly on the dynamics of solving the internal issues within the Union. However, this must not be an alibi for the reform “fatigue” in Montenegro, because our results will depend exclusively on the quality of work of decision-makers, their dedication and responsibility, hence there can be no excuse for all the more evident impediment of essential reforms in Montenegrin society”.

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“Dormant” students are the product of systematic stifling of critical thinking in higher education

Centre for Civic Education (CCE) congratulates the 4 April – Day of Students, to every student. CCE believes that there aren’t many reasons to celebrate this year’s 4 April, since there was no progress in the improvement of position and role of students in Montenegrin society.

Montenegrin students welcome this day in the arms of deep crisis of education system, which severely undermines their prospects of employment, because it has become ever-difficult to find a job with the qualifications obtained through the formal education system. Voice of youth rarely heard, even less acknowledged, which leaves the shaping of current social and political processes without the participation of young people. Montenegrin students are not perceived as stakeholders and bearers of social and political changes in their country.

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Amendments of Law on Higher Education should be the subject of extensive social dialogue

Centre for Civic Education (CCE) estimates that a number of proposals by the Ministry of Education in the case of current amendments of Law on Higher Education introduce radical and potentially dangerous applications which could be of further detriment to the already poor quality of higher education in Montenegro.

First of all, Ministry of Education suggested the abolition of existing Council for Higher Education and the establishment of the new body – Agency for the provision of quality of higher education, which would essentially be completely dependent on the Ministry of Education. They deliberately omitted the provisions on the structure of Agency, election of its members, and the manner of its operation, so that they could ultimately create an Agency with enourmously wide range of authorisations in the area of regulation of higher education, but with no legal defining of the composition of that Agency and who would make these key decisions. This is an unexpected and dangerous move backwards and CCE hopes that final version will still be in line with the needs of public interest. CCE believes that these authorisations of newly formed Agency must be followed by adequate legally defined responsibilities and transparency of its work, as well as the inclusiveness of all stakeholders, which will ensure the competitiveness and legitimacy of key bodies of the Agency, thereby its independence and effective ability to respond to volume and complexity of planned responsibilities. Specifically, CCE proposes the establishment of Council for this Agency which would be elected by the Parliament, based on the public competition, for specific professional profiles and social sectors, which include the representatives of NGOs from the area of education according to the proclaimed policy of Montenegro on the cooperation with NGO sector, as is already the practice for a number of similar bodies which contribute to independence of such bodies with different dynamics. Government should not appoint the members of Agency exclusively, since the Government itself is the founder of state university, while the Agency should be perceived as an independent and autonomous body by all stakeholders in higher education, as a body which presents the pluralism of social efforts with the aim of improvement of quality of higher education and work of every higher education institution in Montenegro. »