AmCham supports further action in seeking progressive strategy to return children back to school
AmCham Slovakia, together with 23 partner organizations, stakeholders in
education and employer associations, calls for a progressive strategy
to return more children back to schools.
Endorsing an official communication to the European Commission on 15 April 2021 by the initiatiave ‘Dajme prednosť školám’ (Let's give children a voice) https://www.dajmedetomhlas.sk/, we firmly believe that all EU member states, including Slovakia, would benefit from a swift, harmonized and detailed plan to return children back to schools.
According to the recent UNICEF report from March 2021 (https://data.unicef.org/resources/one-year-of-covid-19-and-school-closures/), Slovakia kept its secondary schools open just for 34 days over more than one calendar year (10+ school months), lower secondary education for only 44 days while higher education institutions have been closed for the whole period. In comparison of 31 OECD countries Slovakia is scoring the third lowest in length of period with fully closed upper secondary schools. Signatories of the call are convinced the European Commission can help those EU Member States which need to bridge their gaps and get them closer to EU leaders in education, in particular with:
- getting a profound understanding that education and high-quality schools are among key values in the EU and stressing their importance for the future of young generation, our democracy and EU itself;
- raising the awareness about negative effects of school closures and the importance to protect educational and personal development activities for children and young people even during exceptional periods such as COVID-19 pandemic with the goal to minimize the impact on development of young generation and its mental and physical health.
Earlier in February 2021, more than 30 organizations (including AmCham Slovakia - https://amcham.sk/press-room/news/273464-amcham-supports-the-call-for-solutions-to-return-children-back-to-school) representing education professionals, psychologists, students and employer/trade associations proclaimed the necessity to prioritize the education and called the officials for taking necessary steps to ensure safe reopening of schools.
Read the joint letter in both English and Slovak languages, as well as the official press release published on 15 April 2021.