Czech schools could re-open in mid-May, says Education Minister

Currently closed under preventative coronavirus measures, Czech schools could re-open in six weeks, says Robert Plaga

Jason Pirodsky

Written by Jason Pirodsky Published on 23.03.2020 13:42:38 (updated on 23.03.2020) Reading time: 2 minutes

Schools across the Czech Republic, currently closed as part of the country’s ongoing measures against the spread of the coronavirus, could re-open in mid-May, the country’s Education Minister Robert Plaga said at a press conference this morning discussing the Ministry’s current proposal for the education sector.

Summer holidays are also unlikely to be shortened, Plaga emphasized; none of the proposals discussed by the Ministry had included a late finish to the current school year, or early start to the 2020-21 school year.

School entrance exams could take place two weeks after schools have reopened, and end-of-year exams could occur three weeks after they have reopened, said Plaga. In both cases, it would be key whether schools are re-opened by June 1.

“For secondary school leaving examinations, it will be crucial whether schools are opened by June 1, 2020,” Plaga said during the conference.

“If so, the school leaving exams will be in a simplified but similar form as every year. In the event that schools do not open by June 1, 2020, the proposal contains a substitute solution to ensure graduation.”

Entrance exams for secondary schools will take place only on one date this year, to be determined by the Czech Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports. The content of the exam would be unchanged, as would other admissions criteria.

The deadline for evaluating secondary school leaving exams, meanwhile, would be shortened so students could have access to results as soon as possible.

“I realize how the current situation is mentally demanding for pupils, their parents and school educators,” said Plaga.

“We have prepared the presented solution after careful consideration of all the circumstances and various possible variants of the solution, considering that the most important thing at the moment is to calm down the pupils and give them the necessary peace of mind for preparation – both for the entrance exams and the final exams.”

The Education Ministry’s proposal will be discussed by the government today and sent to the Chamber of Deputies for final approval, which could take place tomorrow.

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