Education Ministry: Some 44 percent of children unable to attend kindergarten

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Aug. 12, 2010, 11:21 a.m. | Ukraine — by Interfax-Ukraine

Over 106,000 children are waiting for the opportunity to obtain a preschool education, Education Ministry officials say.

A total of 56% of children aged one to six years old have the opportunity to attend preschool institutions, the Education and Science Ministry of Ukraine has reported. At present there are 15,500 preschool institutions in Ukraine, where over 1.2 million children are educated, head of the department for preschool education at the education ministry of Ukraine Nina Omelianchenko said at a press conference in Kyiv on August 10.

According to her, every year the number of preschool institutions is increasing by 200-300 units.

"But the existing network of preschool institutions does not satisfy the educational needs of the population in full. Only 56% of children aged one to six years old can attend preschool institutions. This means, there is a shortage of places," Omelianchenko said.

She said that at present over 106,000 children "are waiting for the opportunity to obtain a preschool education."

Moreover, almost 1,000 preschool institutions are not functioning, for various reasons.

As reported, on July 22, President Viktor Yanukovych signed a law on amendments to draft laws on secondary education and preschool education, under which pupils will study for 11 years instead of 12. Under this law the compulsory preschool education is introduced for children aged five years.
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