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October 20, 2020
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Start of a new academic year under the special conditions imposed by the pandemic period

President Iohannis:  This academic year will, the most difficult since 1989, in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic

President Klaus Iohannis said on Thursday that the new academic year will be “the most difficult” since 1989, in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Today marks the beginning of a new academic year, which is undoubtedly the most difficult academic year since 1989. The rules of social distancing needed in the context of the health crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic make it difficult for an educational process in which mentoring has a central role. However, I am convinced that you will find the best ways to ensure both the quality of the educational act and the protection of the academic community from the risk of contamination with the novel coronavirus,” the head of state said at the opening of the academic year at the “I.L. Caragiale” National University of Theatre and Cinematography (UNATC).

He stressed that this year would be difficult for the cultural act in general, in the context in which the performance halls have been closed for months, and the measures meant to control the epidemic will not allow a full return to normalcy in the next period.

“There is an inseparable link between the performing arts and the public. I especially appreciate the sacrifice made by the artistic community to contribute to the safety of society as a whole. At the same time, I am aware that there is a real need for support for cultural institutions, actors, directors, filmmakers and media creators, and that is why I am in constant dialogue with the responsible government authorities to find appropriate solutions to this segment that is deeply affected by the pandemic.

Together, the Government, other authorities, creators from all fields of arts and cultural industries and, last but not least, the academic environment, you have the responsibility to think and relaunch the cultural field. We will have to remedy not only the damage caused by the pandemic, but also some systemic gaps, which have made cultural consumption in Romania, in the last decade, well below the European Union average,” said Iohannis.

According to the president, in post-pandemic, economic recovery efforts will need to be accompanied by greater support for culture, both by the state and the private sector.

“This is the message of encouragement that I want to send to the students of the National University of Theatre and Cinematography, as well as to the students from the other universities and art faculties in Romania. Art education is, after all, an essential pillar in constructing a really educated Romania,” added Klaus Iohannis.

He said he chose to attend the opening of the academic year at UNATC given that it “shaped” Romania’s recent culture.

“Through its graduates, the National University of Theatre and Cinematography has shaped Romania’s recent culture and channeled the creative effort of personalities who have honored our country internationally,” Iohannis said.

The head of state conferred on “I. L. Caragiale” UNATC the “Merit for Education” Order in the rank of commander at 70 years since the establishment of the institution.

“As a sign of appreciation of this rich activity of the institution, we decided to award the Merit for Education Order, in the rank of Commander,” said President Iohannis, according to Agerpres.

PM Orban to students: Pandemic imposed restrictions, but we will not allow it to affect access to education

Prime Minister Ludovic Orban has sent a message to students and teachers at the beginning of the new academic year, showing that it begins under the impact of the health crisis, but that the right to learn “is fundamental” and must be respected, “regardless of the difficulties of the moment.”

“The education system, like the health system, felt the strongest the impact of this continuous, demanding, adaptive process, and we were all witnesses of the resilience and solidarity that we knew existed in each of us. The pandemic caused by COVID-19 has imposed restrictions on us, it has changed our lives, but we will not allow it to affect young people’s access to education and training in the most beautiful and prolific period of their lives. This is the note on which we prepared to start the academic year The right to learn is fundamental for every human being and must be respected regardless of the difficulties of the moment because a society can be led to progress and development only by educated people,” Orban said in a press release sent by the Government.

The Prime Minister said he believed it was the responsibility of the institutions and decision-makers to ensure conditions for the educational process to take place under conditions of safety in terms of health.

Another element that the Government thought about in relation to the higher education was “a better integration and adaptation to the expectations of the labour market, to consider” the European and world trends.

According to the head of the Executive, the new study conditions, in a dual or predominantly online system, “amplified the pre-existing differences” between the participants in the educational process, but also contributed to the welding of relations between people.

At the same time, Orban thanked the teachers for the way in which they adapted to the new didactic conditions imposed by the pandemic.

DefMin tells cadets: Challenges – high, it will not be easy for you to maintain academic level

On Thursday, Minister of National Defence Nicolae Ciuca sent a message to the cadets of the military faculties and underlined the high academic level, but also the challenges of the pandemic.

“A new academic year begins today under the special conditions imposed by the pandemic period we are in, with measures to protect against disease, but with ambitious educational goals. The challenges are very great and it will not be easy to maintain a high academic level in military higher education institutions, imposed both by the training of graduates and by elite professors who have confirmed new standards for Romanian university education,” Ciuca transmitted on Facebook.

He also mentioned the members of the cadets’ families and addressed the professors.

The minister stated that the Ministry of National Defence had taken “all possible organizational measures to ensure the necessary equipment and protective materials”. “We will closely monitor that all the established measures are observed,” Ciuca said.

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