Tuesday, 14 July 2020

Education Minister and Ministry Officials Required to Self-Isolate

ZAGREB, July 14, 2020 - All the officials at the Ministry of Science and Education including Minister Blazenka Divjak were informed by epidemiologists on Tuesday that they had to self-isolate and take COVID tests after a ministry state-secretary had tested positive.

The ministry said in a press release that Minister Divjak had consulted epidemiologists and was instructed to go into self-isolation and to be urgently tested for the virus.

All of the ministry's officials were informed that they should self-isolate after the ministry's state-secretary proved positive, the press release said.

Unofficial sources have said that the state-secretary had attended a wedding party in Zadar, where some people have been identified to have caught the coronavirus. After returning to Zagreb she did not undergo a test or go into self-isolation and in the meantime attended a staff meeting of the ministry's officials and other meetings.

Wednesday, 22 April 2020

Blazenka Divjak: Parents to Decide When Their Kids Go Back to School

As Index writes on the 22nd of April, 2020, Education Minister Blazenka Divjak has stated that part of online schooling and education at a distance for children in Croatia is going relatively well. As far as the state graduation is concerned, in discussions with epidemiologists, indicative dates have been proposed for June - and the graduation exam will take place from the 8th to the 29th of June, 2020.

"That's the case in all of the surrounding countries - Slovenia, Austria... Moving state graduation to August wouldn't bring much benefit to anyone, it would just be delaying it. This is how we have backup scenarios. We also want to maximise the time students spend writing their state graduation exam,'' said Blazenka Divjak in conversation with N1.

The minister added that she will announce the current plans for children to return to normal schooling tomorrow.

"Nobody will be forcing children to go back to school, parents will have to decide on that. Classes will be taken online for the vast majority of students, as has been being done so far," Divjak explained.

"Other European countries are embarking on this. Tomorrow, we'll announce the timetable for when we'll go with each scenario. If you want to give the economy a chance to start up, you must allow parents to be able to safely care for their children - either at home or for the schools to take on that role,'' she added.

Blazenka Divjak also stated that classes will not be able to be held as they've previously been, given, among other things, the real need for physical distance.

"We need to work out a detailed scenario, we need to talk to epidemiologists. The vast majority of students will be receiving their education at a distance until the end of this school year,'' she added.

Follow our dedicated section for more on coronavirus in Croatia.

Thursday, 16 January 2020

Parliament Debates Motion for No-Confidence Vote in Education Minister

ZAGREB, January 16, 2020 - Parliament on Wednesday night held a debate on an opposition motion for a no-confidence vote in Science and Education Minister Blaženka Divjak, with Prime Minister Andrej Plenković saying he would persevere in the education reform which, he added, represented a unique strategic step forward.

The government previously dismissed the motion signed by 31 opposition MPs led by the Social Democratic Party. The opposition demanded a no-confidence vote in Divjak because of the situation in the education system, the non-implementation of the education reform and her responsibility for the longest teachers' strike in Croatia.

Plenković said that during his government, the Science and Education Ministry's budget was raised from 13.8 billion kuna to 18.6 billion kuna and that 40 new curricula were introduced.

As for the teachers' strike, he said an agreement was reached with the education unions that salaries would go by 23.5% by October.

Divjak said the opposition motion was politicking, that she had improved the system and that the curricular reform was being implemented in all schools.

"We have received three positive reports from the European Commission which assessed the reform as ambitious and done according to plan," she said, adding that 90% of parents said they were pleased that their children were included in the experimental education programme.

More education news can be found in the Lifestyle section.

Saturday, 25 August 2018

Curriculum Reform Pilot Project Ready for Launch

ZAGREB, August 25, 2018 - Science and Education Minister Blaženka Divjak said on Friday that her ministry was ready for the new school year and the launch of the "School for Life" pilot project in 74 schools.