Maas in de langstudeermaatregel

Studenten kunnen de langstudeerboete ontlopen, als ze zich strategisch in- en uitschrijven. Dat is mogelijk, omdat het ministerie van Onderwijs maar één keer in het jaar wil vaststellen wie er studeert en wie niet.

Volgens het wetsvoorstel zal het ministerie op 30 september turven wie er studeert en wie niet. Het gebruik van zo’n ‘peildatum’ is nadelig voor snelle afhakers: wie in september aan een opleiding begint en in oktober alweer stopt, is meteen een heel uitloopjaar kwijt.

Maar wie zich pas in oktober inschrijft, of in de maanden erna, kan zich aan het oog van de langstudeermaatregel onttrekken. Twee onderwijsjuristen bevestigen de constatering van het Hoger Onderwijs Persbureau, waaronder een hoogleraar onderwijsrecht.

Met name voor masterstudenten zal het eenvoudig zijn. Die kunnen meestal ook in februari instromen. Als ze zich dan in september weer uitschrijven, ontlopen ze de peildatum. In februari stromen ze weer in, terwijl ze in de tussentijd hun scriptie schrijven.

Het ministerie zou dit nog met een ‘maatregel van bestuur’ kunnen veranderen en ervoor kunnen kiezen om vaker te peilen. Het is dan wel lastig uitleggen waarom studenten meteen een heel uitloopjaar kwijt zijn, als ze op één van de twee data niet staan ingeschreven.



“As has become custom, my love-hate relationship with the pigeons on my windowsill continues; they love to irritate me to within an inch of my sanity and I hate them for trying to befriend me, though it feels more like they’re actually terrorising me. The united voice choir of pigeons is at it again, and this time they’ve recruited a tap-dancing, screeching raven that is as tone-deaf as a drunken Delft student staggering home from a beer party.
I awake to the cacophony of poorly coordinated, discordant cooing of pigeons accompanied by the inexplicable tap-dance of the choir’s newest recruit. The cawing of that infernal creature I cannot stand, and thus every morning I proceed to wage war upon these birds. The elephant slippers that lay at the foot of my bed are first to be lobbed at my winged opponents. This tends to scare them off for a bit, but they then retaliate with pecking and wild flapping, leading me to launch a water bottle at them. It becomes rather obvious that they’re taunting me now with their frantic screeching and cawing. As a last ditch effort my pillow is hurled with little success, as the racket merely hits fever pitch. Having run out of objects to throw, the battle is lost again and I surrender to their ‘music’, kissing my slumber away.
Spring is a wonderful time. It’s the season of life and love: trees awaken from months of slumber, flowers bloom, bees spread pollen from flower to flower and even the fowls seem much happier with the warmer temperatures as they splash around in ponds and canals. For all these creatures of the earth I have nothing but joy and envy, save for one: the damn mosquito. I know mosquitoes. Flying around, darting in and out, biting here and there and moving on. Mosquitoes and I go way back; they’ve kept me up, hummed all sorts of tunes in an attempt to lull me to sleep and then feast on my blood. Of all the mosquitoes I’ve encountered over the years, I’ve always known them to stick to basic mosquito etiquette: sweep in, hum a bit, bite, suck some blood. The most adventurous thing they’d engage in would be the attempted sneak attack in broad daylight. But now a new breed of Dutch mosquitoes that I’ve never encountered before seems to have found me.
Like a coordinated band of warriors from a hostile, non-terrestrial empire, they circle around buzzing a strangely hypnotic tune. And if this weren’t enough, they seem to have turned hybrid, too. Hybrid? Indeed. They have clearly developed certain skills that are best described as uncharacteristic to creatures without opposable thumbs. They are highly organised, fearless and ruthless, and work in teams, with some seemingly lifting the blankets and sheets covering my head for the others to attack the top of my head. I swear I’ve seen them do this: I once woke up in a start only to find my blanket hovering strangely above my head, yet dismissed this as a confused dream and drifted back to sleep. Come the next morning however and there was a new string of bites running across my forehead. Indeed, hybrid they’ve become but quashed they must be!”

Francis Ndonga, from Kenya, is a second-year BSc student studying aerospace engineering. He can be contacted at: fdude85@gmail.com

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