Over 17,000 more jobs for teachers in Poland: education minister
PR dla Zagranicy
The number of jobs available to teachers in Poland has grown by more than 17,000 this school year, the country’s education minister said on Friday.
Education Minister Anna Zalewska gives a news conference in Warsaw on Monday. Photo: PAP/Radek Pietruszka
Critics of an education reform undertaken by the country's conservative government and introduced in September claimed the move would lead to a massive loss of jobs among teachers.
"We have 17,768 more jobs for teachers this school year compared with a year earlier," Zalewska said, citing figures from a database that collects statistics on the number of students and teachers from schools and educational institutions nationwide.
Meanwhile, the Polish Teachers’ Union (ZNP) said in mid-October that some 6,500 teachers have lost their jobs as a result of the education reform, which the government launched amid protests.
The union said that a further 12,700 teachers have seen their working hours cut and pay reduced, and 5,300 have been forced to work in several schools to keep their paychecks from shrinking.
The education ministry has dismissed the union's data as unreliable.
Zalewska has reiterated in recent months that one of the objectives of the government’s education reform is to protect teachers' positions and that any loss of jobs in schools has been a result of demographic trends.
The education reform sees Poland phasing out a system of six-year primary school, three-year middle school and three-year high school and replacing it with an earlier model of eight years of primary school and four years of high school or five years of vocational training.