• November 7, 2013
  • 197

The Minister cancelled simplifications on the exam from Lithuanian

© Fot. BFL/Šarūnas Mažeika

Dainius Pavalkis, the Minister of Education has signed a regulation that cancels simplifications on the exam from Lithuanian for schools of national minorities.

The ministry established that all graduates, irrespective of their school, will have less number of authors to choose from. In this way the essay has been standardized for all students. Graduates will be allowed to choose from three, not seven authors. During the state examination the essay will have to consist of no less than 500 words, during the school one – 400.

The minister pointed out that only the differences in grading will remain. Students from national minority schools will be allowed to make more mistakes. This simplification will apply until 2019.

The Electoral Action of Poles in Lithuania claims that the minister’s decision discriminates national minorities.

According to the education law from 2011, this year graduates in Latvia for the first time wrote the same Matura exam from Lithuanian, but the learning program in Lithuanian and non-Lithuanian schools has been standardized only two years ago. Consequently, students from national minority schools had over 700 hours of Lithuanian less than their peers from Lithuanian schools.

Taking the differences between teaching hours into account, there were some simplifications provided. Graduates from national minority schools did not have to write the long essay this year, they had more authors to choose from and they could make more mistakes. Unfortunately, the decision about providing simplifications has been sued on in court which declared that it is against the Constitution as it violates the principle of equality.

The Supreme Administrative Court of Lithuania had also pointed out that ‘the country has a duty to provide members of national minorities with opportunities for learning in their mother tongue,’ but also ‘has a right to specify and demand to acquire a certain level of the state language.’

The vice-chairman of the parliament Jarosław Narkiewicz from the Electoral Action of Poles in Lithuania has been repeatedly pointing out that such opportunities were not provided and the decision about standardizing the examination this year was discriminating. He said that  the Electoral Action of Poles in Lithuania will still intend to change the education law from 2011 which standardized the exam from Lithuanian.

Source:  http://zw.lt/litwa/minister-odwolal-ulgi-na-egzaminie-z-jezyka-litewskiego/

Tłumaczenie by Anna Leśkiewicz w ramach praktyk w Europejskiej Fundacji Praw Człowieka, www.efhr.eu. Translated by Anna Leśkiewicz within the framework of a traineeship programme of the European Foundation of Human Rights, www.efhr.eu.

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