LAShOR - Latvian Association for Support of Schools with Russian Language of Instruction

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The documents of the conferences, The mandate from the parents. We will be grateful if you are willing to support LAShOR activities in any suitable way. Amendments to Laws, The patterns of basic and secondary education programmes for minorities in Latvia.

18.06.2008
LAShOR introduced the Comments on Implementation of the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities in Latvia to the Advisory Committee of the Council of Europe.
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23.05.2003
Radio Liberty:
Latvia: Ethnic Russians Protest Planned School Closings
Riga, 23 May 2003 (RFE/RL) -- Some 10,000 people rallied today in Latvia's capital Riga against the government's plans to eliminate state-funded Russian schools.

20.05.2003
Riga city will allow mass protest against education reform on Eurovision eve -- mayor
RIGA, May 20, BNS - The Riga City Council will be allowing the planned mass protest against Latvia's planned education reform for minority schools on May 23, a day before the Eurovision finals in Riga, said the Riga Mayor Gundars Bojars. The Riga mayor said that the city council will approve the demonstration, officially requested as a meeting,at the Esplanade park in the very center of the capital, the decision being made after consultations with security agencies.

The city will be suggesting the meeting take place from 4 pm to 6 pm. The city council will also be suggesting that organizers of the protest provide for security at the meeting, as an estimated 10,000 people are to arrive, many of which will be children and school kids. The Latvian Russian Language Tuition School Support Association head Igors Pimenovs said that they have agreed with a security company for the hiring of 15 security guards at the event, as "some radical organizations may use the event for their own means."
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15,000 Latvian Russians Protest School Closures

A protester holding a sign reading "She wants to study in her mother tongue."

RIGA, Latvia -- Nearly 15,000 Latvians rallied against the elimination of state-funded Russian schools Friday, the biggest protest in the Baltic country since its independence.






Organizers scheduled the event a day before the annual Eurovision contest aired, taking advantage of the nearly 1,000 journalists from across Europe, and the world, who had gathered in the capital, Riga, to cover the event.

The protest was held just a few blocks from the event's site.
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Memorandum
The State has ceased the dialogue on problems of education of national minorities

6 April 2006
Riga, Latvia

LAShOR considers, that the primary and secondary school education exercised through the medium of the family language serves as the means of development of the native language and self-esteem of students. It is the principal means of maintenance of national minority cultural and national identity. In the meantime we are confident, that the maintenance of the Russian language and culture in Latvia can be provided only in interrelation and balance with the maintenance of the Latvian language and culture as well as the languages and cultures of other ethnic and linguistic groups of Latvia.

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The HOLIDAY 'TATYANA'S DAY'

LOGO The founding date of Moscow University coincided in 1755 with the Great Martyr Tatyana's day, the Orthodox holy day. Since then Russian students proclaimed Tatyana their patroness, and Holy Tatyana's day became a holiday both in Russia and even abroad. In 2000 LASHOR renewed the tradition of celebrating Tatyana's Day in Latvia. The holiday was proclaimed the Day of Russian education and culture.Not students only but also the teachers of different schools (not only Russian) participate in the Day. This, LASHOR hope, will strengthen inter-national contacts within Latvia. One of the goals of the Day is to raise the authority of Russian education, to retain Russian culture in schools in Latvia.
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PUBLIC DISCUSSION OF MINISTERIAL DRAFT

LOGO

According to the Latvian Law on Education all secondary schools must start transition to teaching in Latvian only from 01.09.2004. The question is, how is this going to happen in practice? The Ministry Of Education and Science clarifies the details in its recent draft of Secondary School Programme Standards.

The Ministry claims that Russian as the language of teaching will be used also after 01.09.2004, and 40 % of the total lessons will be taught in Russian. And yet the question is if 40 % is enough to preserve ones national and cultural identity and to obtain a full command of the native language and subjects of general education. Could this 60/40 % standard be implemented in real life? LAShOR as well as Russian Language and Literature Teachers Association and The Union of Citizens and Non-Citizens call upon public discussion of the Ministerial Draft.
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BOOKS FROM RUSSIA GO TO SCHOOLS IN LATVIA
BOOKS Both Russian and Moscow governments have presented books and textbooks to schools in Latvia.Upon Russian embassy request LAShOR is arranging distribution of the books in Latvia. Totally 14863 books arrived to Latvia since November 2001. They are already forwarded to schools' libraries.

Three more parcels with books arrived in December 2002-January 2003. They include literature, textbooks, educational textbooks which will be distributed shortly. The distribution is arranged according to the procedure agreed with the Russian embassy in Riga.

As soon as new books arrive from Russia it will be announced through newspapers and on LAShOR home page. The information on the books will be sent to schools by e-mails.

THE THIRD PARENTS CONFERENCE

LOGO LAShOR held the 3rd Conference of Parents of Latvia in Riga Congress Hall on 14.09.2002. The Conference slogan was 'To study in the native language'. Based on the decisions of the 1st Conference of Parents and 2nd Conference of Parents, LAShOR worked out the mandate for the candidates to the 8th Saeima (Parliament) of Latvia, as well as the draft of amendments to the law on Education and to the Law on General Education. More than 800 people participated in the Conference. The participants voted to support the mandate for the candidates to the 8th Saeima.
LASHoR documents
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MANIFESTATION 23.05.2003
BOOKS

The meeting "For the free choice of the language of teaching!" organized by LAShOR, took place in Riga centre on May 23.

The main goal of the event was to clearly demonstrate that there exists a strong demand for the education in the Russian language in Latvia.

The main demand of the meeting was - the parents and the schools ( and not the government) should determine the language of teaching for the children in a democratic country.

According to observers the meeting was attended by 5000-10000 people. Apart from those living in Riga, many people from Ventspils, Valmiera, Elgava, daugavpils,Liepaja and other towns came to support the event. In fact this was the first mass national minorities manifestation of their needs and demands since 1998, when the Law on Education was adopted. According to the Law, only Latvian must be used as the language of teaching in secondary schools from 01.09.2004.

We considered it very important to give the word to those who are affected directly by the school reform and who are not being listened to by the authorities.

Thus the teachrs, students and parents from various Latvian cities and towns spoke at the manifestation.

The event was quite peacful with no excesses or provocations, predicted by the many government officials.

During the perion from April 12 till May 23 57000 signatures have been collected for the Appeal to immediately alter the Law on Education and to guarantee that the national minorities schools could determine and choose the language of teaching.

This Appeal was handed over to those Saeima deputees present at the manifestation. The Appeal was also delivered to the President, the Saeima and the Ministry of Education and Science.

The signatures will be collected till 01.09.2003. In case the demands will not be fulfilled, other opposition resistance actions will take place, among them - "EMPTY SCHOOLS" action on Sept.1,2003.

Ieriku iela 12-13, Rga LV-1007; tlr.: +(371)9802919; fakss: +(371)7602479; e-mail: [email protected]