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MOSCOW, September 19 (Itar-Tass) — The Prosecutor General's Office (PGO) said criminal proceedings might be opened against officials at the Institute of Economy and Culture in Moscow, following a report on gross violations in its operation.
"The Prosecutor General's Office found gross violations of the legislation on education, license requirements and the terms of operation of a non-government educational institution - the Institute of Economy and Culture. The materials of the check into the exposed facts of abuse of authority by the institute's officials and the faking of documents on education have been forwarded to investigative bodies to decide on criminal prosecution of the college administration," the PGO said.
According to the prosecutors, the college developed a practice of issuing higher education certificates to students who completed truncated training programs. It enrolled students for 3rd-and higher semesters without solid reasons. During this kind of enrolment, the college often neglected to check the previous education certificates (such documents were missing in 121 personal files of the students the PGO inspectors checked). The students in question were enrolled in 2010.
It was ascertained that more than 30 persons were illegally enrolled for six specialties, including "law" by the rector's decree.
In addition, the prosecutors exposed numerous violations in the course of state examinations of the graduates and the awarding of degrees to them. The college failed to produce documents on State Final Certification, including the protocols of the sessions of the examination and certification boards. A number of protocols lacked the signatures of board members.
The college does not have the necessary academic documents on education programs and proper material and technical resources. It has a shortage of teachers.
"To show compliance with the requirements of the state education standard, the institute's administration showed a contract on internship at the state research institution Institute for Research into Problems of Strengthening Law and Order" under the Prosecutor General's Office which contains hallmarks of falsification of the signatures of the parties to the contact.
"The institute for strengthening law and order was restructured at the government’s order back in March 2007, while its seals were destroyed under the resolution on writing off the material reserves," the PGO said.
The students' grade books contained false information on tests they passed in different subjects, as envisioned by education program, as well as on the results of mastering subjects when receiving the first higher education.
Despite this fact, the students were cleared for taking state examinations, by whose results they graduated as certified lawyers, according to the prosecutors.
In the period from 2006 through 2010, the college issued more than 280 certificates of higher education in jurisprudence to students who failed to take a complete training course.
Similar violations were found in other specialties, such as management, social-cultural service and tourism.
The exposed law-breaking violates the citizens' rights to receive quality higher education, prevent the realization of their labor rights, and create conditions for recognizing the certificates issued by the college as invalid.
The prosecutors ordered the Federal Service for Supervision of Education and Science to run an additional check at the Institute of Economy and Culture into compliance with legislation in the field of education, the quality of training and license requirements. The PGO then will decide on holding the college administration responsible by the results of the check.