Ukrainian children’s education has been significantly impacted by the Russia’s full-scale invasion coming directly after the COVID-19 pandemic, a major conference in Kyiv was told yesterday.

 “The last year has been truly testing for the educational process in Ukraine,” Yulia Hryshyna, a Ukrainian lawmaker and chair of the Parliamentary Committee for education and innovation, said at the conference.

Yulia Hryshyna

 “The situation is very different from other countries too: the consequences of the full-scale war have come on top of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic,” she said.

 Disrupted Learning

 Organized by Ukraine’s State Service for Educational Quality, the Service also presented its key research findings for 2022:  

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·      800,000 Ukrainian students – or 20 percent of all students - have changed from daily, in-person education to on-line and family-based education;

·      30 percent of all students do not have regular access to the educational process due to the war;

·      60 percent of parents say that their children did not have regular and continuous education during the last year;

·      Some 50 percent of teachers believe educational attainment has declined, but that is partly dependent on subject matter, and;

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·      In eastern and southern Ukraine, approximately 35 percent of students were forced to leave Ukraine or go to other regions of Ukraine due to war circumstances.

 The State Service for Educational Quality is part of executive government in Ukraine and reports to the Minister of Education and Science of Ukraine. It’s responsible for the quality of education and educational standards, and helps educational institutions to improve the quality of education.

Destroyed Schools

The Government’s findings yesterday align with recent research results from savED, an NGO focused on the restoration of educational infrastructure in Ukraine.

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 As reported in Kyiv Post, savED, which is headed by former Education Minister Anna Novosad, has established that as of January 2023 some 22 percent of Ukraine’s schools had been damaged by war and that 420 schools had been completely destroyed.

 Survey work by savED found that61 percent of parents are concerned about mental health impacts on their children such as insomnia, anxiety, concentration issues, and problems with communication.

 An educator in Borodyanka, where one of the two schools was completely destroyed during Russian occupation, recently told Kyiv Post that a key barrier to kids returning to ‘live’, in-class education is the lack of a large enough bomb shelter at the school.

 Hryshyna said that a key priority for the future was national-level monitoring to get a stronger understanding of the educational losses of each Ukrainian child.

 “After that, it’s vital to introduce a national program of additional and compensatory activities so that schoolchildren can make up what’s been lost,” Hryshyna said.

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