Report on enrollment campaign and preparations for new academic year

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The development and improvement of the education syetem in Belarus were discussed during the working meeting of Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko with Vice Premier Vasily Zharko and Education Minister Igor Karpenko on 15 August.

The President asked about the enrollment campaign which will last till 20 August. “I would like to know the main things. How will we finally improve admission regulations? This was the task for all people in charge of monitoring the progress in the enrollment campaign. How will we revise the regulations, or maybe will we bring certain old approaches back? We have been testing various approaches for a long time. What will we choose? The main issues are the progress in the enrollment campaign and the improvement of admission regulations,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.

The head of state also wanted to know about the preparedness of various educational institutions for the academic year, other topical issues.

“Another priority in this field is the update of educational programs and books,” the President said. “I do not see any problems here. Even the terms are ok. We neither write new books not create new educational programs. The majority of programs and books are rather good. It is just needed to revise certain topics in textbooks,” the Belarusian leader said.

Aleksandr Lukashenko demanded to do it as soon as possible in accordance with the previous terms, to finish the publication of new books and the preparation of new programs in 2018. “Working groups can be set up for all categories of textbooks. More practice-oriented specialists rather than academicians should be involved in this process. However, academicians are also needed because they are, figuratively speaking, people with ultimate knowledge,” the head of state remarked.

The President focused on the preparations for the new academic year, the organization of back to school fairs. Low-income families and orphans should be in the center of attention. “The formula is as follows: all children should be equally prepared for 1 September. I do not mean that they should be wearing the same uniform. Children from low-income families should not stand out. All children should be well prepared for 1 September,” Aleksandr Lukashenko emphasized.

Other topic is the preparations for the Nationwide Conference on Teaching. “We must organize it well. The President has not visited such events for ages. The time is ripe for the meeting with the teaching community to discuss new conditions, new programs, and other issues. This will also be a chance to consult with teachers. I think that they also have proposals. They are our pillars, our people, and it is very important for me to visit this conference,” the head of state said.

The President said that this event should give an opportunity to discuss all pending issues.

Vasily Zharko, the chairman of the state commission for the monitoring of the organization of the enrollment campaign in the institutions of higher learning and colleges in 2017, told the head of state that the enrollment campaign is well-organized and calm.