Conflict news

Breakaway authorities step up Russification at schools, kindergartens in predominantly Georgian Akhalgori

by | Sep 4, 2018

Kindergarten in Akhalgori (cominf.org).

Akhalgori, DFWatch – The 2018-19 academic year in Akhalgori schools and kindergartens starts on September 5 instead of September 1 and poses dire problems for ethnic Georgian kids and their parents.

Despite the fact that ethnic Georgians compose over 55 percent of Akhalgori population, the Tskhinvali regime disbanded the sole Georgian kindergarten in the district in May. Since then it has been renovated and turned solely Russian. All Georgian-speaking staff have been fired and replaced by ethnic Ossetians. Even cooks and guards were kicked out because of poor knowledge of Ossetian language.

In addition, the remaining six Georgian schools in Akhalgori district have been compulsorily turned half-Russian where teaching in Georgian is banned up to 5th grade. Georgian children in the first grade who do not know any Russian receive textbooks in Russian and have to start study all subjects in Russian. The Georgian is taught as a mere foreign language.

Although teaching with Georgian textbooks is allowed from the 6th to 11th grades, it doesn’t include geography and history. In these two subjects Georgian textbooks are prohibited as “biased”.

That actually means that in five years literally no teaching in Georgian remains in the district which even now is mentally and economically attached more to Georgia proper than to Tskhinvali and other parts of the breakaway republic.

Although breakaway authorities pour much more resources to Russian schools, most Georgians prefer half-Georgian schools for their kids, Soso Tsotniashvili, the head of education department at Provisional Administration of South Ossetia, said to DFWatch.

Most teachers there are ethnic Georgians and students feel more amicable environment there, he said.

In 2018 the academic year in South Ossetia has been postponed from Sept. 1 to Sept. 5 due to solidarity to Beslan school siege victims.

According to the Ministry of Education of the Tskhinvali regime, 805 first-graders enrolled in its schools that is by 50 kids more than last year.



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