4. You are talking with a British student. What would you advise him/her to do to prepare for an exam well?
5. Today some young people want to study abroad because they believe that the level of education is higher there. Would you do the same?
III 1. Letís talk about education. What can you tell me about the system of education in Belarus?
Each citizen of the Republic of Belarus is guaranteed the right to get education. The multilevel system established in the country allows exercising the right to the full extent. Education in Belarus is free and compulsory from age 6 to 15 and the system is well administered. The majority of girls and boys come to school for the first time when they are 6 years old. The first four years of school are devoted to acquiring basic skills and habits of writing, reading, count; mastering primary knowledge of the nature, society and man; getting acquainted with principles of personal hygiene and healthy way of life. Thereafter pupils go on to basic secondary school for 5 years culminating in a certificate of basic education at age 15. The curriculum continues to be academically based and universal across the state.
When students enter senior secondary school level they are faced with a raft of choices regarding the route of education they wish to take. They may remain in the academic stream for 3 years at gymnasiums. They may attend vocational classes at lyceums for 2 years. Or they may train at a strictly practical level at colleges and obtain a trade.
A network of institutions throughout Belarus provides refresher courses and reskilling opportunities in a country where ongoing education remains a priority. Fees are charged and there is little central control.
Altogether there are 57 higher educational establishments, of which 43 are state owned (28 universities, 8 academies, 1 institute, 5 higher colleges, 1 higher school), 13 are private and 2 are run by religious organizations. Every establishment occupies its particular niche in training of highly qualified staff for various branches of national economy. In total about 300,000 students are enrolled.
The system of education in the Republic of Belarus is based on national traditions and global trends in education area. Today Belarusian educational system includes pre-school education, general secondary school, vocational education, secondary special education, higher education.
The system of education of the Republic of Belarus includes different types of educational establishments: kindergartens, nurseries , primary, basic and secondary schools, gymnasiums, lyceums, childís home, boarding school ,vocational schools and technical lyceums, (technicums, uchilishche and colleges) ,universities, academies, [ə'kædəmɪ], institutes ['ɪn(t)stɪtjuːt] and higher colleges.
There are two official languages within the education system in Belarus, Russian and Belarusian.
Pre-school education is not compulsory in Belarus but around 70% of children attend nursery or kindergarten before they start school. These institutions are for children under six years. Children are taught pre-reading and pre-writing as well as basic mathematics. The children learn to follow a timetable and there are classroom rules which teach respect and consideration for their classmates and the teacher. The public nurseries and kindergartens are free of charge but parents should cover about 60% of the mealís cost.
Most children in Belarus start school at the age of 6. The school year begins on the first of September for all grades and lasts thirty-four weeks. School education in Belarus consists of elementary( or primary), basic and secondary school. The five-year basic secondary school is compulsory.
During the first four years of school children learn such basic skills as writing, reading, counting, get some information about nature and society, get acquainted with healthy way of life.
At secondary school students study such subjects as the Belarusian and Russian languages and literatures, a Foreign Language, History of Belarus and the Worldís History, Man and Society, Mathematics, Information Technologies, Geography, Biology, Physics, Chemistry ,music, fine arts, physical training and labor education. Children can also attend optional classes if they want to study some subjects at a profound level.
The 10-grade assessment system of knowledge is used. Upon completion of grade 9 students have to pass the examinations to receive the certificate of basic education. Students can continue their education at secondary schools, gymnasiums, lyceums, uchilishches( vocational schools) technicums,(technical schools) At the end of grade 11 students sit the final examination and if successful receive the certificate of (complete) general secondary education.
I have been studying at school for unbelievably long 11 years. I have got used to the things in educational system in Belarus which my foreign friend may find amusing. Iíll give you a brief description of it, highlighting the differences in the system of education in Belarus and other European countries. Education in Belarus is free and compulsory from age 7 to 16. From age 7 to 11 children attend primary school where they are taught how to read and write. They study basics of essential subjects. From 16 to 18 pupils do their best to get a good knowledge of numerous subjects. We canít choose only three subjects to specialise in. Pupils in Europe can focus on three exams for GCSE, but we have to read up the stuff we are unlikely to find useful in our lives. As for higher education, our universities are great if your dream is to become a scientist, but students are said to be suffering from underdeveloped practical skills.
III 2. Does your school differ from any other school you know?
I study at Lyceum. It offers excellent facilities, high teaching standards and a friendly atmosphere which helps achieving great academic results. Our Lyceum offers modern facilities for learning such as fully equipped laboratories for experiments in Physics, Chemistry and Biology.
Pupils in our Lyceum must wear a school uniform, do homework, work hard during the lessons, and be on time for the lessons. It also has a lot of traditions. We celebrate them with great pleasure. My Lyceum is the best for me.