Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis defended the government’s education reform bill on Thursday saying it “responds boldly to the age-old problem of university security.”
“There are regulations that address problems that go back decades, others that address current issues and others that open horizons to the future,” he told lawmakers during the debate in Parliament.
“The education ministry's bill we are discussing today has all three of these characteristics because it answers boldly to the perennial problem of safety in the universities; It establishes a modern method of admission and the selection of studies and upgrades higher education as a whole, bringing in line with the needs and the pace of the 21st century,” he added.
The bill, which focuses on tertiary education, includes a provision that would allow police to patrol university campuses.
The conservative government says it wants to establish a campus police force to stop university grounds from being used for illegal activities such as selling counterfeit goods or organizing violent protests.
It also introduces a minimum entry requirement and maximum periods for students to complete their degrees.
“Our intention is to give state-run universities back to their natural owners – the students, the professors and university employees. To make it once again a hive of creativity and hub of fertile thought,” he added.