The competition for the best school and the best teacher was summed up with a gala on the 23rd October in the Polish Culture House in Vilnius. The best Polish primary and secondary schools were honoured in the 21st edition of the ranking, which has been organized by the Polish Educationa Society in Lithuania for many years now.
This year, the most-awarded schools in the competition have been: Ignacy Kraszewski Gymnasium in Vilnius, Konstanty Parczewski Gymnasium in Nemenčinė, Józef Obrembski Gymnasium in Maišiagala, and Michał Baliński Gymnasium in Jašiūnai.
The president of the Polish Educational Society in Lithuania pointed out that the schools have been ranked according to the students` national exams results. This year the criteria has been extended in the way that not only results in the Lithuanian language, foreign language, maths, and history, but also in physics, chemistry, biology, IT, and geography were counted in the overall result of the school. Data concerning university entrances was also taken into account.
Today, we are glad but also sad. This sadness is a result of the authority`s certain negligence towards Polish schools in Lithuania – said Józef Kwiatkowski – The gladness is the result of teachers` and administration`s hard work and therefore very good results that we achieve.
The president of the Society mentioned that 71.1% of the secondary schools graduates continue their education at higher-education institutions, one-third of whom entered publically financed universities, which is a good result.
Representatives of regional departments of education, regional authority, and other eminent guests expressed their deepest congratulations to the awarded schools and their teachers.
The pedagogues whose students demonstrated great knowledge in the national exams were awarded the best teacher titles.
Łukasz Kazimierczak, the Second Secretary of the Consular Department of the Polish Embassy in Vilnius, gave the prizes to the laureates and read out the congratulatory letter from the Ambassador of Poland in Lithuania, Jarosław Czubiński.
“On this day, reflection upon the status of Polish schooling in Lithuania seems perfectly valid – ambassador Jarosław Czubiński wrote in the letter to the teachers. – Considering Polish schooling in Lithuania, we notice its uniqueness in Europe, even in the World, and we are thankful to the Lithuanian authority for creating this opportunity. We are deeply concerned about the continuous attempts to grab these unique solutions and tries to limit or even liquidate Polish schooling in the country. On the one hand then the Lithuanian authority pride itself for the uniqueness of the minorities schooling, on the other they constantly strive towards its liquidation.”
The ambassador pointed out in the letter that the Polish party is aware of the problems caused by the implementation of the amended Act on Education of 2011, especially in the part concerning the unification of examination in the Lithuanian language. “We realise the difficulties that brings the continually reduced ‘student`s basket’. We perceive the strong competition from well-equipped Lithuanian schools in Polish communities. We are troubled by the setbacks caused by the accreditation procedure” – he wrote. The ambassador mentioned that sympathizing in this difficult situation, Poland is committed to support Polish community abroad, especially concerning national identity, mother tongue, and national culture.
“We greatly respect your effort and its effects so important for the young Poles studying in Polish schools, but also for the Polish community as a whole to its continuation and future. I am wholeheartedly thankful and I shall declare my further help. I wish you deep satisfaction in your job and all of your achievements, gratitude of your students, and all the best. I would like to congratulate all of the awarded, and all of the others I would like to wish good luck in the next editions of the competition” – Jarosław Czubiński, the ambassador, expressed his congratulations.
“The road to success is a hard road, it`s everyday`s hard work – told “Kurier” Helena Juchniewicz, the principal of Józef Ignacy Kraszewski Gymnasium, the laureate school of the competition. – This never happens accidentally. There must be a proper teaching stuff, wide vision of a school`s functioning. Changing lifestyles impose on a school to seek new teaching methods; therefore, teachers non-stop take part in various workshops and seminars.”
In spite of the good results achieved during especially difficult for Polish schooling time, the principal pointed out system flaws of the Lithuanian language teaching.
“Introduction of the unified examination in the Lithuanian language led to the student`s concerns whether to choose the school or the national level of the exam. In 2012 only 2% of the students would choose the school level of the exam, whereas currently it is around 10% of the students” – said Helena Juchniewicz, identifying the problem with the metholdology of teaching this subject as soon as at the level of the primary school.
“There should be introduced a special methodology of teaching children in Polish primary schools because currently we have the same handbooks and syllabus as our Lithuanian counterparts; the difference is that we have to teach the language at the absolute beginner level. Teachers of the Lithuanian language put lots of effort to puzzle out how to make up for it all. In this case all of the system should be changed. It is claimed that it is being changed but I personally cannot perceive them.” – stated the principal.
For the 13. time, the best primary school was awarded in the competition. For its achievements in the schoolyears 2013-2014 and 2014-2015, the Primary School in Pavilnys, celebrating its 100. jubilee, was titled the best primary school.
The European Parliament deputy and the leader of Electoral Action of Poles in Lithuania, Waldemar Tomaszewski, expressed his congratulations to the best teachers and principals.
“Although as far as in March we thought that all of the schools applying for accreditation will not get it, thanks to active participation of parents and students, we have already saved 7 schools teachings grades 11-12.” – said the leader of the AWPL (about the schools in Šalčininkai District Municipality: Dieveniškių and Baltosios Vokės, in the Vilnius Region: Jałówka, Miedninkai, Zujūnų, in the Trakai Distric Municpality: Polukniu and Trakai)
“For the time being, we have not been successful in ensuring accreditations for 4 other minority schools. The accreditation for another 2 schools is just a matter of time. We cannot give up.” – pointed out the AWPL leader when mentioning the extension of the deadline for accreditation up to 2017 by the Parliament.
“Court decision concerning Konarski School is outrageous. It is claimed that parents should have thought out that there would not be any secondary school grades formed. The Parliament votes for the extension of the deadline for accreditation, so parents should have thought out that the Parliament is voting just for fun?” – added Tomaszewski ironically, calling judiciary a disgrace and commenting on “politicized courts of mates and buddies”.
Students, laureates of the Polish Children and Youth Song Festival, kept the audience amused with their performances. The actors of the Polish Theatrical Studio performed a play titled “All that makes up Poland” directed by Lilia Kiejzik.
‘The Best School, The Best Teacher’ competition laureate schools:
- J. I. Kraszewski Gymnasium in Vilnius (category: schools of the city of Vilnius)
2. K. Parczewski Gymnasium in Nemenčinė (category: schools of the Vilnius Region cities)
3. J. Obrembski Gymnasium in Maišiagala (category: schools of the Vilnius Region)
4. M. Baliński Gymnasium in Jašiūnai (category: schools of the Šalčininkai District Municipality )
Category: Schools of the city of Vilnius
1. John Paul II Gymnasium
2. A. Mickiewicz Gymnasium
3. S. Konarski Gymnasium
Category: Schools of the Vilnius Region cities:
- H. Sienkiewicz Gymnasium in Lentvaris (Trakai District Municipality)
2. J. Śniadecki Gymnasium in Šalčininkai (Šalčininkai District Municipality)
Category: schools of the Vilnius Region
- Gymnasium in Mickūnai
2. St. R. Kalinowski Gymnasium in Nemėžis
3. Gymnasium in Pagiriai
4. E. Orzeszkowa Gymnasium in Baltoji Vokė
5. A. Krepsztul Gymnasium in Butrimonys
Category: primary schools
- John Paul II Progymnasium in Vilnius
2. Primary School in Pavilnys
3. Primary School in Šumskas (the Vilnius Region)
4. Primary School in w Šalčininkėliai (Šalčininkai District Municipality)
Schools awarded for participation in competitions and contests organized by The Polish Educational Society in Lithuania and for I-III prizes won in national and international competitions and contests:
- Sz. Konarski Secondary School in Vilnius
2. J. Śniadecki Gymnasium in Šalčininkai
3. St. R. Kalinowski Gymnasium in Nemėžis
4. John Paul II Progymnasium in Vilnius
5. Primary School in Mostiškės
The awarded Polish language teachers:
- Beata Polakowska — St. R. Kalinowski Gymnasium in Nemėžis
2. Natalia Jankowska — J. Obrembski Gymnasium in Maišiagala
3. Beata Bagdevičienė — Gymnasium in Trakai
4. Janina Kuryło — M. Baliński Gymnasium in Jašiūnai
5. Wacława Iwanowska — Gymnasium in Eišiškės
6. Stanisława Wielisiejczyk —A. Mickiewicz Gymnasium in Vilnius
7. Barbara Dajnowicz —W. Syrokomla Secondary School in Vilnius
8. Joanna Szczygłowska — J. I. Kraszewski Gymnasium in Vilnius
9. Aleksandra Bojarin — E. Orzeszkowa Gymnasium in Baltoji Vokė
The awarded Lithuanian langugage teachers:
- Vilma Tamošaitienė — John Paul II Gymnasium in Vilnius
2. Henrika Mikalajūnienė — A. Mickiewicz Gymnasium in Vilnius
3. Irena Kropienė — M. Baliński Gymnasium in Jašiūnai
4. Ana Mackel — St. R. Kalinowski Gymnasium in Nemėžis
5. Virginija Barkauskienė —F. Ruszczyc Gymnasium in Rudaminos
6. Audronė Balčiūnaitė-Markova —K. Parczewski Gymnasium in Nemenčinė
7. Jurgita Tarasevičienė —P. K. Brzostowski w Turgeliai
8. Aušra Girdziušienė —H. Sienkiewicz Gymnasium in Lentvaris
The awarded mathematics teachers:
- Krystyna Czupryńska — John Paul II Gymnasium in Vilnius
2. Wiesława Dowejko —J. I. Kraszewski Gymnasium in Vilnius
3. Janina Kostecka — Sz. Konarski Gymnasium in Vilnius
4. Irena Świglińska — J. Śniadecki Gymnasium in Šalčininkai
5. Wanda Talmont — Gymnasium in Eišiškės
6. Danuta Aluk—- J. Obrembski Gymnasium in Maišiagala
7. Wanda Raczyńska— M. Baliński Gymnasium in Jašiūnai
The awarded history teachers:
- Danuta Radewicz — John Paul II Gymnasium in Vilnius
2. Beata Kowalewska — S. Konarski Gymnasium in Vilnius
3. Maria Stanczik — Gymnasium in Eišiškės
4. Waleria Adomajtis — J. Obrembski Gymnasium in Maišiagala
5. Alina Narkiewicz —H. Sienkiewicz Gymnasium in Lentvaris
6. Laima Narodowskaja — E. Orzeszkowa Gymnasium in Baltoji Vokė
The awarded foreign language teachers:
- Nina Sienkiewicz — John Paul II Gymnasium in Vilnius
2. Regina Bogdanowicz —J. Lelewel Secondary School in Vilnius
3. Tatjana Kałasznik — A. Mickiewicz Gymnasium in Vilnius
4. Joanna Markowska — S. Konarski Gymnasium in Vilnius
5. Jolanta Antanawicziene — M. Baliński Gymnasium in Jašiūnai
6. Władimir Dubrowskij — J. Śniadecki Gymnasium in Šalčininkai
7. Lina Labżientiene — Gymnasium in Pagiriai
8. Natalija Tiurnina — Gymnasium in Mickūnai
9. Dorota Sveikauskienė — Gymnasium in Pabradė
10. Joanna Vaiciulionis — H. Sienkiewicz Gymnasium in Lentvaris
11. Olga Nowicka — J. I. Kraszewski Gymnasium in Vilnius
- Romualda Kołosowskaja — S. Moniuszko Gymnasium in Kalabariškės
2. Weronika Grakalskienė — Gymnasium in Buivydžiai
- Helena Kulik — W. Syrokomla Secondary School in Vilnius
2. Genoefa Paszkiewicz — J. I. Kraszewski Gymnasium in Vilnius
3. Bożena Nadzeras — A. Mickiewicz Gymnasium in Vilnius
4. Danuta Baniewicz — K. Parczewski Gymnasium in Nemenčinė
5. Danuta Jermałowicz — E. Orzeszkowa Gymnasium in Baltoji Vokė
6. Irena Aniuksztiene — St. R. Kalinowski Gymnasium in Nemėžis
7. Irena Griniewicz — J. Obrembski Gymnasium in Maišiagala
8. Ala Lebedewa — Gymnasium in Mickūnai
9. Tatjana Żilinskienė — Gymnasium in Pagiriai
10. Lilija Ukrainiec — F. Ruszczyc Gymnasium in Rudaminos
The awarded biology and chemistry teachers:
- Wioleta Juchniewicz — J. Śniadecki Gymnasium in Šalčininkai
2. Aleksandra Sinkiewicz —A. Krepsztul Gymnasium in Butrimonys
3. Eleonora Makowska — Gymnasium in Mickūnai
4. Ałła Belewicz — St. R. Kalinowski Gymnasium in Nemėžis
5. Jolanta Szałkowska — J. I. Kraszewski Gymnasium in Vilnius
6. Regina Komar — K. Parczewski Gymnasium in Nemenčinė
7. Teresa Samsonow — A. Mickiewicz Gymnasium in Vilnius
The awarded physics teachers:
- Paweł Stankiewicz — J. I. Kraszewski Gymnasium in Vilnius
2. Henryk Sinkiewicz — W. Syrokomla Secondary School in Vilnius
3. Anna Komarowska — Secondary School in Zujūnų
The awarded IT teachers:
- Bożena Korwin-Piotrowska — John Paul II Gymnasium in Vilnius
2. Inga Brasel — J. I. Kraszewski Gymnasium in Vilnius
3. Aleksander Żuk — J. Śniadecki Gymnasium in Šalčininkai
4. Mirosław Pakietur — K. Parczewski Gymnasium in Nemenčinė
The awarded geography teachers:
- Alicja Bobin — M. Baliński Gymnasium in Jašiūnai
2. Jelena Szapiro — K. Parczewski Gymnasium in Nemenčinė
3. Teresa Dzierżyńska — S. Konarski Gymnasium in Vilnius
4. Iwona Gołubowska — W. Syrokomla Secondary School in Vilnius
The awarded primary school teachers:
- Elwira Lepiłowa — John Paul II Progymnasium in Vilnius
2. Irena Szuszkiewicz — John Paul II Progymnasium in Vilnius
3. Czesława Lewanowicz — Primary School in Šalčininkėliai
4. Leokadia Smyk — Primary School in Šumskas
5. Lila Ogint —St. F. Kowalskiej Primary School in Riešė
6. Anna Ulewicz — Primary School In Pavilnys
Tłumaczenie by Julia Siepak w ramach praktyk w Europejskiej Fundacji Praw Człowieka, www.efhr.eu. Translated by Julia Siepak within the framework of a traineeship programme of the European Foundation of Human Rights, www.efhr.eu.