Ministry plans to test foreign schoolchildren’s knowledge of Czech

The test is set to begin in two months, but the format and timing are yet to be specified by the Ministry of Education.


Written by ČTK Published on 19.02.2024 13:19:00 (updated on 19.02.2024) Reading time: 1 minute

According to Education Minister Mikuláš Bek, the government plans to conduct comprehensive Czech language tests for foreign schoolchildren from Ukraine and other countries. 

The announcement came after Bek met with education ministers from the Visegrad Four (V4) countries (Slovakia, Poland, and Hungary), the Baltic states, and Ukraine.

According to Bek, the Ministry will use the language test results to establish measures for educating foreigners who are learning Czech as a foreign language.

The education ministers agreed that the countries faced similar challenges in educating refugees, including language training, data shortages, and a lack of teachers.

“Conducting blanket testing is crucial to determine our current position. The integration of Ukrainian children has revealed that we were not adequately prepared, in comparison to countries like Germany and Austria, to provide Czech language instruction to foreign students on a sufficient scale,” claimed Bek. He also noted that the ministry only has partial information from the school inspection.

The Czech language test is set to begin in two months, but the format and timing are yet to be specified by Bek. The Ministry will utilize the results to implement strategies for enhancing foreign language education.

Bek stated that the Ministry is drafting new regulations for the teaching profession. Some foreign language teachers may be trained to teach Czech to non-native speakers as part of these changes.

Education ministers also addressed language training and data reliability for tracking Ukrainian refugees’ movement. The Czech Republic lacks a functional system, requiring collaboration with Ukraine. Slovak Eduation Minister Tomáš Drucker highlights the need for EU-wide data discussions. Despite political differences, V4, Baltic countries, and Ukraine representatives emphasize cross-country education cooperation.

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