The legislature’s Education and Culture Committee yesterday passed a preliminary review of an amendment to the University Act (大學法) that would give the Ministry of Education increased powers to merge national universities.
The amendment would enable the ministry to “merge national universities for the best interests of the nation’s higher education resources.”
It would have the authority to compel national universities to merge if the ministry saw the need.
Under such a system, national universities would have no choice but to accept calls for mergers.
During a question-and-answer session with legislators at the committee, Minister of Education Wu Ching-ji (吳清基) called university mergers a “trend” amid a declining birthrate.
At present, National Pingtung University of Science and Technology and National Pingtung University of Education are negotiating a merger, as are National Taiwan University and the National Taipei University of Education.
National Taiwan Normal University and National Taiwan University of Science and Technology have also been in talks for years.
Wu said National Taichung Institute of Technology and National Taichung Nursing College could submit a merger plan by the end of March.
Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Yang Chiung-ying (楊瓊瓔) said several universities may have difficulty meeting their student quotas during the 2016 academic year because the number of students entering university that year is expected to shrink by 60,000.
Wu said he would also propose an exit mechanism for private universities wishing to leave the market.
Lawmakers yesterday approved the Executive Yuan’s nomination of Transitional Justice Commission Acting Chairwoman Yang Tsui (楊翠) to head the agency, as well as the nominations for seven commission members. Former commission member Yeh Hung-ling (葉虹靈) is to serve as deputy chairwoman, while commission member Peng Jen-yu (彭仁郁) is to retain her post. The new members of the commission are Judicial Reform Foundation executive director Chen Yu-fan (陳雨凡), National Chengchi University professor Frank Wang (王增勇), National Taiwan Normal University associate professor Lin Chia-fan (林佳範), Chung Yuan Christian University associate professor Hsu Wei-chun (徐偉群) and National Dong Hwa University associate professor Awi Mona. All
A DECADE’S WORK: The two-volume, 1,400-page lexicon has collected more than 20,000 words and phrases, and is expected to help people learning the Liu Dui dialect The Liu Dui Culture Research Association on Saturday unveiled the nation’s first domestically compiled lexicon of Hakka-language words in the Liu Dui dialect, an effort that took a decade of work and cost about NT$7 million (US$233,085 at the current exchange rate). The two-volume, 1,400-page lexicon collected more than 20,000 phrases and words, and is estimated to be of great value in helping people learn the Liu Dui dialect and culture, the association said. It could also become a reference book for teachers, the association added. The lexicon collected phrases and common words used in daily speech, as well as local sayings, phrases
EXPANSION: The transportation ministry is to subsidize Taipei and Kaohsiung’s purchase of 63 multipurpose taxis, as well as the payment of incentives for drivers The Ministry of Transportation and Communications is appropriating nearly NT$60 million (US$2 million) to subsidize plans by the Taipei City Government and the Kaohsiung City Government to expand their multipurpose taxi fleets, it said over the weekend. The ministry said that it has since 2013 subsidized the multipurpose taxi service nationwide, as it has become a way for disabled people to travel. The nation has 980 multipurpose taxis, including 301 in Taipei and 272 in Kaohsiung, ministry statistics showed. Last year, the service was accessed more than 200,000 times in Taipei and 460,000 times in Kaohsiung, which the ministry said shows
The One Bear Museum in Hsinchu County’s Guansi Township (關西), a teddy bear museum once touted by the county government as a “luminous pearl” along Provincial Highway No. 13, is facing possible closure. The museum’s building, which was provided by the county government, has a serious water leakage problem and lacks a parking lot for buses to bring in tour groups, Hsinchu County Councilor Lo Shih-shi (羅仕琦) said on Saturday. The county government should step in to rescue the museum, or the negative reviews about the museum on the Internet might affect visitors’ impression of the township and the county, he said. The