- June 18, 2015
Mayor’s crucial, but not final, vote on the matter of the Lelewel school
K. Daukšos High School, providing education in Lithuanian language, received an approval from the City Council to form classes 11 and 12 starting 1st September 2015. The Polish J. Lelewel High School, located in the same district of Vilnius, Antakalnis, which also applies for the status of a “long” gymnasium that would fulfil the programme of specialised training in engineering, did not get such an approval.
23 councillors voted against establishing classes 11-12 in J. Lelewel High School from September, 16 of them voted for creating them, 7 abstained. In a situation when the councillors’ votes end in a tie, the crucial vote belongs to the Mayor. Remigijus Šimašiaus voted against forming classes 11-12. The councillors unanimously voted for creating classes 11-12 in K. Daukšos High School.
When voting on the matter of the Polish school, liberals and conservatives did not even want to take into consideration the fact that Genoveita Krasauskienė, the Vice-Minister of Education and Science, requested to abstain from voting. The Ministry of Education is currently deciding whether the process of accreditation can begin in the J. Lelewel school. However, the conservative Vice-Mayor Valdas Benkunskas, who is liable for education, declared that it would not change anything as the Ministry of Education had earlier declined the Lelewel’s school petition for granting it the status of a “long” gymnasium which would provide the programme of specialised engineering training.
The Lithuanian school functioning in the same district of Vilnius, Antakalnis – K. Daukšos – also applies for the status of the “long” gymnasium, which would fulfil the programme of specialised engineering training. At first, the Ministry’s answer was negative. However, influential politicians interceded for the school and the acting Minister of Education Juozas Bernatonis signed the approval to start the process of accreditation. Thus, the City Council made a formal decision to create classes 11-12.
The fate of the Polish school in Antakalnis is not doomed yet as the school still has a chance to get the status of the “long” gymnasium. The meeting of the Seym’s fraction of Electoral Action of Poles in Lithuania with the representatives of the Ministry of Education, including Vice-Minister Genoveitą Krasauskienė, took place on Wednesday. Among other things, the conversation concerned the J. Lelewel school.
Translated by Anna Plebanek within the framework of a traineeship programme of the European Foundation of Human Rights, www.efhr.eu.