Ivane Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University (TSU) organized a permanent conference of rectors on a topic “The Ways of Overcoming COVID-19 Crisis and Its Impact on Ensuring Inclusiveness and Equality.” The event was hosted by Batumi Shota Rustaveli State University.
Rector of TSU and Chairman of the Permanent Conference of Rectors, George Sharvashidze, Director of the National Center for Educational Quality Enhancement, Tamar Makharashvili and rectors of Georgian higher educational institutions attended the conference.
The ways of overcoming the COVID-19 crisis and administrative difficulties related to the beginning of the new academic year were discussed at the conference.
The participants also discussed the impact of the coronavirus crisis on ensuring inclusiveness and equality; the issues of preparations for the new academic year and current administrative difficulties. The participants also focused on the importance of internationalization; changes in the unified national exams; cluster accreditation/institutional accreditation as one of the preconditions for saving financial and human resources; distance learning-related amendments to legislation and normative acts.
Rector George Sharvashidze said that a number of recommendations were developed for relevant agencies regarding the issues discussed at the conference.
“A very interesting meeting was held at Batumi Shota Rustaveli State University. We spoke about development perspectives, about how we are getting ready for the new academic year, what major problems we are facing today, etc. We will shape the recommendations and submit them to relevant agencies,” he noted.
Rector of Batumi Shota Rustaveli State University, Merab Khalvashi said that the participants summarized the previous spring semester and persisting challenges. “We spoke about what platforms we have used in emergencies. We will have to co-exist with COVID-19 during the new semester. It is important to carry out the learning process smoothly,” Merab Khalvashi said. Citing the example of Batumi State University, he noted that the university will again offer a mixed learning process.
Rector of Kutaisi International University, Alexander Tevzadze hailed the conference as very important, saying that higher education offered by the university should be of the best quality that will ensure high student satisfaction.
By the end of the discussion, Rector Sharvashidze awarded Rector of Batumi State University, Merab Khalvashi with TSU Anniversary Medal for successful and fruitful cooperation with TSU.
The Permanent Conference of Rectors was founded at TSU in 2019. It shares the fundamental principles of the Magna Charta of the European Universities (Magna Charta Universitatum), such as ensuring academic freedom, autonomy for universities, sharing European and national humanist traditions, integration of teaching and research, etc. Such associations of rectors already exist in many European countries.