Daily news summary


Study: Czech schools lacking 1,800 teachers

Czech schools are lacking 1,800 teachers but that figure could rise to as many as 6,000 in September, according to research carried out by the Ministry of Education released on Tuesday. Around 9 percent of classes are currently given by unqualified teachers or by qualified educators forced to work overtime, the report found after collating data from 99 percent of the country’s schools.

Women continue to strongly dominate in the profession in the Czech Republic, with only around one-fifth of teachers being men. The average age of a teacher in this country is 47.2.

Hamáček insists on naming replacement for Staněk despite Babiš raising questions over departure

The chairman of the Social Democrats, Jan Hamáček, insists that his party will nominate a new candidate for culture minister following the resignation of Antonín Staněk. Mr. Staněk has said he will stand down before the end of May and stated publicly that Mr. Hamáček had ordered him to go.

After a meeting on Monday with President Miloš Zeman, Prime Minister Andrej Babiš of ANO suggested that Mr. Staněk’s departure was unusual and involuntary.

President Zeman says he will not decide on how to proceed on the matter until he speaks to Mr. Staněk, with whom he is said to enjoy warm relations, and Mr. Hamáček later this week.

Error made in renovation of Prague’s astronomical clock

Part of Prague’s famous astronomical clock was mistakenly painted over during renovation work last year, Czech Television reported. The error concerned part of the clock face showing astronomical events. The Prague authorities discovered the blunder and had that section correctly repainted some weeks ago.

Czech Television said experts from the Czech Academy of Sciences and the Ministry of Culture had been critical of the renovation project, which was the most extensive in several decades. The medieval clock is located in the tower of Prague’s Old Town Hall and is visited by millions of tourists every year.

TI: Czech parties’ Euro election campaigns for most part opaque

Czech political parties’ campaigns for this week’s European Parliament elections are in the main non-transparent, says the local branch of Transparency International. The majority are negligent when it comes to publishing data on financial and personnel issues and only fulfill legal obligations in a formal manner, the anti-corruption group said after monitoring 11 of the groups standing.

Transparency International said only the Pirates, Christian Democrats and Allies for Europe (a joint ticket of TOP 09 and the Mayors and Independents) were fully transparent. The opposite was the case with Tomio Okamura’s Freedom and Direct Democracy, which even refused to divulge its total campaign budget, TI said.

Attack on Czech TV website timed to coincide with hockey transmission

The website of public broadcaster Czech Television was the victim of a cyber attack on Tuesday. Spokesperson Karolína Blinková said the attackers had targetted the online broadcasting of an ice hockey match between the Czech Republic and Switzerland.

Ms. Blinková said the attacks had come from both within the Czech Republic and abroad. Czech Television’s website was accessible once again from around 1:30 pm but some users were unable to log onto the CT 24 news site.

Czechs overcome Swiss 5:4 in final group game at hockey worlds

The Czech Republic have beaten Switzerland 5:4 in their final group game at the World Ice Hockey Championships in Slovakia. The Swiss opened the scoring but the Czechs pulled ahead. However, Switzerland then evened the scoring at 4:4 before a goal by Jan Rutta gave the Czechs victory.

The Czech Republic now go forward to the knock-out phase of the competition. Tuesday’s result means that they have a chance of remaining in Bratislava for the quarter-finals instead of having to travel to the second city hosting the competition, Košice.

Weather forecast

Wednesday should be overcast with the chance of rain in the Czech Republic, with daytime highs of up to 18 degrees Celsius. The following days should bring dry weather and temperatures of up to 21 degrees Celsius.