The Egyptian parliament. (Photo: Al-Ahram)
Speaker of Egypt's parliament Hanafi Gibali announced Tuesday that the government has decided to withdraw ten draft laws from parliament, including one that was aimed at changing the system of the country's high school certificate.
The draft laws were referred to parliament some months ago and they were up for discussion and voting in the House, Gibali said.
"But, I got a message from Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouli informing me of the cabinet's decision to withdraw the ten draft laws," he added.
Among the bills is an amendment to the 139/1981 education law, which was aimed to change the Thanawyya Amma (high school) certificate to be three years instead of one, and open the door for students to pass electronic exams.
The amendment was rejected by the Senate – Egypt's consultative upper house parliament – when they were put up for a vote last April. Senators said the new system is not suitable for Egyptian families because it puts them under huge psychological, nervous and financial pressure over three years.
Nabil Dibis, head of the Senate's Education Committee, said the committee members recommend that a one-year system be adopted, and that students study just six subjects, three in the first term and three in the second.
Dibis added that the proposed Thanawyya Amma also violates the constitution because it contravenes the constitutional principle of free education.
Minister of Education Tarek Shawki deplored the Senate's rejection, accusing its members of standing against reform of Egypt's education systems.
The new Thanawyya Amma bill also faced rejection when it was referred to the House of Representatives. lawmakers said any reform of the education system should be introduced gradually and over stages and without radical changes which might be painful for Egyptian families.
Speaker Gibali indicated that the list of draft laws that will be withdrawn also include three bills amending the 66/1973 law on traffic regulations; one on amending the 155/2002 law on export promotion; one on regulating natural reserves; a bill on cleanliness rules; one on promoting vehicle manufacturing and feeding industries; one on radio and wireless devices' fees; and one on fishing and regulation of fish farms.