Teacher during the lesson with the kids

South Moravian Educational Authorities Are Working To Integrate Ukrainian Students and Their Teachers

The wave of refugees from war-torn Ukraine includes large numbers of children. To make their arrival as smooth as possible, educational authorities in Brno and South Moravia are working hard to integrate both schoolchildren and teachers from Ukraine, opening new facilities for the students and new job opportunities for Ukrainian teachers. Photo credit: Freepik

Czech Republic, March 22 (BD) – More than 600 Ukrainian children who fled to the Czech Republic before the war are already enrolled in Brno schools, and 450 further applications have been processed. Due to the high number of applicants, the City of Brno has decided to temporarily establish Ukrainian classrooms, where teaching will take place in the Ukrainian language. An entire building on Cacovická in the Brno-sever district will be set aside for Ukrainian classes, creating a total of six classrooms. The facility belongs to the J. A. Komenský Primary School on Náměstí Republiky, and was until now unused.

“Ukrainian class groups will operate only as long as necessary,” said Petr Hladík (KDU-CSL), First Deputy Mayor of Brno, who is in charge of education in the city. “We used a currently unused school building on Cacovická for these purposes, other classes will be in the Čejkovická and Merhautova primary schools. As soon as the children are able to communicate in the Czech language, we will gradually integrate them into regular classes. Children who have not found free capacities in schools near their place of residence can register in Ukrainian classes.”

Martin Maleček, Mayor of the Brno-sever district, commended the management of J. A. Komenský School on the rapid preparation of premises for the teaching of Ukrainian students. “Even though everything was created on the fly, so to speak, the school is ready to provide teaching. In our district, the Merhautova Primary School has prepared two more classes for pre-school education,” added Maleček. According to headmistress Simona Pokorná, the school is now opening one class for Ukrainian children, with a Czeck-speaking teacher from Ukraine. The school is currently in the process of hiring two more Ukrainian teachers, and Czech language teachers will also be involved in teaching the Ukrainian children Czech.

Meanwhile, the regional education job portal has been expanded to include Czech teachers with knowledge of Ukrainian and Ukrainian teachers fleeing the war. In a few hours, it will also be possible to post on the site in English and Ukrainian. The aim is to create a single database from which kindergartens, primary and secondary schools can draw staff with teaching skills. The region wants to help children and teenagers integrate into the Czech educational system, where language is often a barrier.

“Our portal ‘Jobs in Education’ regularly lists all types of jobs in education in our region,” explained Leona Sapíková, director of the Institute of Education for Moravia, which is implementing the portal. “Given the current crisis, we decided to supplement it with a database of Czech teachers with knowledge of Ukrainian, but also Ukrainian teachers who can help Ukrainian children and students integrate.”

Another necessary step to involve Ukrainian teachers is professional training and deepening their knowledge of how the Czech school system works. “The arrival of Ukrainian refugees means a big jump in demands for schools,” said Jiří Nantl, Deputy Governor of the South Moravian Region for Education. “We need people who will help us, as teachers, to cope with this situation. We will also strive to support them in this task, we are preparing a number of specific activities of the region, which I will present in more detail next week.”

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