The Czech Ministry of Transport has recently put forward a proposal on abolishing the regulation on publicly subsidised discounts in public transportation. In case the proposal would be accepted, public and private transport companies will not have the obligation to offer any discounts to students. The current expenses of students in the Czech Republic on transportation are relatively high and the abolition of these discounts can raise the prices of public transportation significantly, which will have a considerable impact on the social and economic situation of students and their families. The proposal of the Czech Ministry of Transport directly deepens the already existing inequalities in access to higher education.
Moreover, this will affect not only students enrolled in higher education institutions, but also pupils and students in primary and secondary education institutions and therefore negatively influence the inclusive character of Czech higher education system in general.
ESU clearly recognises guaranteed public financial support of students’ and learners’ traveling expenses as an issue of public interest, because it helps to foster study mobility and reduce social and economic barriers within different regions and groups of learners.
ESU therefore supports the position of SK RVS and urges the Czech government to refuse the proposal of the Ministry of Transport and to preserve the current system of students’ and pupils’ discounts.