• August 16, 2017
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Council gave permission to turn Mickiewicz and Konarski schools into a four-year middle school

City council gave permission to turn three national minority schools into four-year middle schools.

According to the project four schools in Vilnius: Adam Mickiewicz school, Szymon Konarski, Aleksander Puszkin and school in Fabijoniškės (Lithuanian school) would be turned into four-year middle schools. 29 councilors voted for the project , 2 of them abstained from voting. Conservatives announced that they will blackball the meeting. ‘For some time now we could have observed weird behavior of Remigijus Šimašius, when expensive ideas for the city are being accepted summarily with help of Tomaszewski fraction. Educational matters became an object of political market’ – announced the leader of Vilnius conservatives Valdas Benkunskas. Members of political party ‘Lithuanian List’.

‘Vilnius Poles and Vilnius Russians are citizens of Lithuania and this matter should be solved by city council’ – said Gintautas Paluckas after voting. ‘I think that after reorganization, the number of students in school of Szymon Konarski and middle school of Adam Mickiewicz will rise, because four-year middle schools have right to enroll students from all city’ – said Gintautas Paluckas to 15min.lt, before the meeting.

In the beginning of next week Linas Linkevičius informed that the matter is being observed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Poland. ‘We need to be careful’ – said to LRT Lithuanian minister.

Mayor Remigijus Šimašius, who is currently on his holiday, wrote a letter to his partners from coalition. ‘The matter is being investigated at the highest level. I do not want to be reserved, but it is worth contextualizing – I do not want the problem to became a problem of national security’ – wrote the politician.

Linkevičius agreed with the Mayor. ‘If my friend, Minister is taking care of it on his own, then how differently can we look at it?’. – head of Lithuanian diplomacy announced.

Matter of reorganization has been looked through by the council on the 26th of July 2017, but unfortunately, because of agreement of conservatives with Zuokas party quorum was lacking. Lithuanian Freedom Union members, conservatives and Lithuanian List have left the room’. ‘A new tandem has been created – of Zuokas and conservatives who decided to blackball the meeting. It did not work well for some time, but unfortunately they managed to do it’ – commented Šimašius. Mayor added, that ‘We should think if we want to be in the coalition with conservatives’.

As a part of reorganizing schools in Vilnius, Szymon Konarski school has been turned into primary school. In 2015, Vilnius city council decided not to create 5th grades in Mickiewicz school. According to plan, the school should have grades from 9 to 12. Parents accused the fact and in 2015/2016 and 2016/2017 5th grades were created on basis of court judgement.

Translated by Agnieszka Piontek within the framework of a traineeship programme of the European Foundation of Human Rights, www.efhr.eu.

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