NEWS

Education minister in tug of war with rectors

Education Minister Anna Diamantopoulou on Tuesday stepped up a standoff with university rectors, accusing them of seeking to safeguard their own positions and hampering the government?s efforts to streamline the state sector.

Commenting on the rectors? opposition to a new law that reduces their influence in university senate elections, Diamantopoulou claimed that the academics simply wanted ?to control the institutions.?

If the rectors want to oppose the law, they can do so in court, the minister told Skai, but ?they do not have the right to decide whether something is or isn?t constitutional.?

She also accused the academics of refusing to submit lists of surplus staff — as all state institutions have been asked to do — to allow authorities to develop a labor reserve scheme.

The scheme, which aims to put thousands of civil servants on a heavily docked salary for a year before their status is reviewed, has failed to take off due to widespread resistance.