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Reform of specialized secondary education: discussion of legislative support

The reform of specialized secondary education involves the introduction of profiles and subjects to choose from and the creation of a new network of educational institutions in which students of grades 10-12 will study.

At the initiative of the Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine, with the support of the DECIDE Swiss-Ukrainian Project, a round table was held with the participation of deputies of the Verkhovna Rada Committee on Education, Science and Innovation, the Verkhovna Rada Committee on the Organization of State Power, Local Self-Government, Regional Development and Urban Development and the leadership of the Ministry of Community Development, Territory and Infrastructure of Ukraine.

The participants of the round table discussed the prerequisites and regulatory and legislative changes for the successful implementation of the reform of specialized secondary education; challenges of the reform in the context of the war, demographic aspects; the role of communities and regions in the implementation of the reform and the creation of an optimal network of general secondary education institutions.

The need for education reform in the regions was noted, especially in the country during the war, when specialists were vital for the restoration of the economy and its development, it was also emphasized that those Ukrainian communities that had been destroyed or were under occupation need special attention. There is an urgent need for a balanced approach to the planning of the educational network, and the need to work out the issues of budgeting and logistics.

«One of the criteria for the sustainability of political systems and the maturity of society is the ability to implement reforms that go beyond the term of one government or one parliament. Progressive reforms. Education reform is one such reform. This is not an easy task during the war. But a lot has already been done. And I am convinced that even more will be done. But we can accept this challenge only through a dialogue between the parliament, the government, and society with the involvement of partners. I hope for the responsibility of every politician, every public organization, every leader of the region and the community», – Oksen Lisovyi, Minister of Education and Science of Ukraine mentioned the need for dialogue between parliament, government, society and partners to implement such a complex reform during the war.

Oleksandra Azarkhina, Deputy Minister of Communities, Territories and Infrastructure Development, shared her opinion that to implement the reform, communities need to strengthen their competencies and capacities to soberly analyze the processes and thoroughly make decisions on the work of educational institutions.

«I believe that even in such extreme times it is extremely important to talk about the future, children, youth, the next generation. They represent our future and we must lay the foundations for their education. Reforms start with communities. Now it is extremely important to continue the reform so that children have equal access to quality education, so that our development continues. In Switzerland, we stand shoulder to shoulder with Ukraine and help and will help Ukraine on its way», – Andreas Huber, Director of the Cooperation Program of the Swiss Embassy in Ukraine, expressed full support for Ukraine.

«Unlike other European countries, today we do not have decades to implement reforms in education. Instead, we must do everything necessary to return our fellow citizens. Access to quality education is one of the important prerequisites for the return of Ukrainians. In addition, most of them already have something to compare with. Quality education should be accessible to all children in our country: both from rural and rural, and from urban communities. This means that the reform cannot be postponed until “after”», Valentina Poltorak, DECIDE Project Manager, said about the specifics of the Project implementation conditions in Ukraine and stressed that the reform can be an important factor in improving the demographic situation.

Dmytro Zavhorodniy, Deputy Minister of Education and Science of Ukraine for Digital Development, Digital Transformations and Digitalization, said that the Ministry will start piloting the reform of specialized secondary education in selected institutions a year earlier and stressed the need to transform the network of lyceums.


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