“Schools in the academic year of 2011-2012 will offer more to learning”, a ministry of education announcement on Tuesday underlined, adding that the goal is to have “schools that will be able to implement the unified reformed curriculum and the innovative actions promoted within the framework of the materialisation of the new school”.

Referring to the merger or establishment of elementary and secondary school units in the next academic year, the statement underlined that “the specific process is being completed after two months of consultations and following a meticulous study of each school case.”

The ministry's plan to eliminate nearly 1,900 separate schools -- some housed in the same complex -- around the country via mergers has generated increased criticism by educators' unions, municipalities and parents' assocations.

In elementary schools, the maximum number of pupils per class will be 25, whereas in secondary schools will be 25 pupils plus 10 pct. Each school unit will have less than 400 pupils enrolled in total, the announcement stated.