Most Ukrainian child refugees not enrolled at Czech schools but September intake expected

The majority of Ukrainian refugee children who have arrived in the country in recent months have not yet entered the Czech education system, officials said on Monday. However, a major intake is likely to occur after the summer holidays, says the education minister.

Nearly three months after Russia launched its war on Ukraine, inspectors visited nearly 70 percent of the Czech Republic’s schools where at least 10 Ukrainian pupils are enrolled to conduct a survey of how Ukrainian child refugees were integrating into the country’s education system.

The research found that three-quarters of kindergarten age Ukrainian children have not been enrolled in the Czech Republic to date. The same goes for two-thirds of those of school age.

The minister of education, Petr Gazdík, said his officials had handled the situation well to date. He said such a project hadn’t been faced since WWII and thanked teachers and others for their dedication.

However, the inspectors found that over half the schools teaching Ukrainian refugee children had had problems with staffing and capacity issues already.

Around 26,000 Ukrainian children were attending Czech elementary schools in the middle of May, while 3,800 were going to kindergartens.

The number attending Czech schools increased by 12 percent from the start of April, the inspectors found.

Most of the children have been integrating into regular Czech classes. Only one-tenth are being taught in separate groups, where the focus is on learning the Czech language.

Author: Ian Willoughby
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