“Your 2020/21 year is not a lost generation.” and “Keep your optimism”: Education Minister Heinz Faßmann tried to stir up around 40,000 students who are taking their school-leaving exams this year. On Friday he presented the now finished and specified Matura package. As already known, the start is on May 20th. As in the previous year, there are relief due to the Corona restrictions: only three written school-leaving exams, the oral Matura on 16./17. June is voluntary, the annual grade of the final class is included in the assessment.
“Nothing is given for free. You don’t even need to,” said the education minister to the students in the final classes. But neither is it pretended that nothing has happened. He spoke of a “humanized Matura”. As in the previous year, there will only be three written school leaving exams instead of four. It starts on May 20th with German, on May 21st there is mathematics, between May 25th and 31st there will be a written Matura in a foreign language. A fourth written Matura can be completed voluntarily.
The oral Matura, like the presentation of the pre-academic work, is basically voluntary. Anyone who successfully completes the written Matura and has at least a satisfactory grade in their annual report card and achieves 30 percent of the required result in the written Matura has already passed the school leaving examination. The requirement of 30 percent for the Matura result is made in order to prevent someone with a good grade in the annual report from deliberately submitting the written Matura without answers, as happened in some cases in the previous year. Anyone who has a negative result in the written Matura and also does not have a satisfactory degree in the final certificate must take the oral Matura as a compensation test. The subject area is restricted for the oral Matura. Faßmann was generally confident: “Mathematics will not be a hurdle.”
Directors see a “compromise”
The federal spokeswoman for the AHS directors, Isabella Zins from BORG Mistelbach, described this year’s Matura regulation at the press conference with Faßmann as a “compromise”. On the way to graduation since November, “there was no chaos,” she emphasized. Zins was above all happy that the oral Matura is being retained as a voluntary task.
Federal school spokeswoman Alexandra Bosek said: “In an exceptional situation, exceptions must be made.” At the same time, like the Minister of Education, she affirmed that this year’s high school graduation class was about “no lost generation”: “The past year was no leaning back.”
Friday will also be Corona test day
The Corona restrictions, which for example only allowed home tuition for high school students from the beginning of November for weeks until February, are also now leading to further changes in all classes in the summer semester. As in the first semester of the 2020/21 school year, there will only be one homework per subject. If someone does not pass a grade in a class, they can still automatically move up to the next class – unless they had a fail in this subject in the previous year. If two or more are insufficient, the decision about promotion rests with the teachers’ conference.
The corona self-tests of the students in elementary schools, middle schools and lower grades will see another innovation from next week. In future, Friday will also be the test day, as Faßmann announced on Thursday evening in “ZiB 1”. So far, Monday and Wednesday were fixed days for the corona self-test.