Kosovo Scraps Tuition Fees for Bachelor & Master Students at State Universities

Kosovo

Bachelor and Master students in Kosovo will no longer pay a semester fee starting from the 2021/2022 academic year, following the decision of Prime Minister Albin Kurti’s government to remove tuition fees for students pursuing studies at state universities.

The news has been confirmed by Kosovo’s Deputy Minister of Education, Science, Technology, and Innovation, Dukagjin Pupovci, during a press conference, who said that the review of the amendment of the Administrative Instruction for students’ payments at state universities has already begun, Erudera.com reports.

He pointed out that students pursuing a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree will be exempted from paying the tuition fees when they register for the academic-year semester for the first time, aiming to encourage students to fulfill their obligations and not waste time and money in repeating the semesters. He also said that the government is considering assisting PhD students in this regard as well.    

“Education is a right for which no student should pay. Therefore, starting from this academic year 2021-2022, in accordance with the Government Program of the Government Kurti II, students will be exempt from fees at the public university,” Kurti’s Self-Determination Movement (Vetëvendosje) said.

According to the government’s estimates, the seven public universities in Kosovo receive around 1.6 million annually from students’ fees. Pupovci stressed that this amount is not unaffordable for the government, and the latter is able to compensate students.

Nonetheless, the education experts in the country claim that such a decision will not help in improving the quality of education or reducing the financial burden on students.

The Executive Director of the “Admovere” NGO, Aulonë Memeti, said that the education reforms are more important, adding that by removing the tuition fee the government will only increase the number of illiterate students as there is no quality education.

According to her, the government should switch its focus to scholarships and offer more scholarships to students depending on their needs, in particular to those who are not able to cover the university expenses.

Earlier, the Organization for Improving the Quality of Education (ORCA), operating in Prishtina since 2016 with its mission to increase the quality of education in Kosovo, mainly on higher education, said that the government’s priority should be the investments that would improve the quality of education.

Free education at state universities has been one of the main priorities of PM Albin Kurti’s government program.