The government does not ensure that a company holding an education licence provides good education

9/24/2003 | 12:00 AM

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TALLINN, 24 September 2003 - The audit carried out by the SAO led to the finding that formal requirements have been established with regard to the issue of adult education licences and that all applicants have been awarded equal treatment. However, the system does not ensure that the recipient of the licence is competent.

Chief Auditor Jüri Kõrge: "There are two reasons why the education licence cannot be seen as a quality mark – practical inactivity and the poor regulation of the field. The competence and the technical possibilities of applicants are not assessed and the legislation sets inadequate substantive requirements to curricula, equipment and facilities, and lecturers. All the applicants, who have been able to fill in the necessary forms, have received the licence. Furthermore, the activities of licence holders are not monitored and the body competent to take control action has not been specified. Consequently, it would be even theoretically impossible to withdraw a licence due to the poor quality of education."

Today, the adult education licence mainly serves the purpose of providing an income tax refund to the trainees. In this context, the authorities refunding income tax only check whether the company has been granted any licences for providing some form of training, regardless of whether the licence covers the training course taken by the person applying for an income tax refund with regard to the tuition fee.

The fact that licences are not required for all training courses provided makes the licences even less purposeful from the substantive aspect. Many training establishments, including large and recognised ones, operate without a licence, since they provide training courses having a total volume of less than 120 hours.

The SAO suggested that the Minister of Education and Research should make a choice as to principle – whether to establish substantive requirements with regard to adult education licences and to ensure compliance monitoring or to abolish the licences. Otherwise the education licences still give people the wrong signal without giving any indication of the quality of services provided.

Sven Soiver
Press Representative of State Audit Office
Telephone: (372) 640 0787
GSM: (372) 53 414464
E-mail: [email protected]

  • Posted: 9/24/2003 12:00 AM
  • Last Update: 10/2/2015 4:33 PM
  • Last Review: 10/2/2015 4:33 PM

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