"Finland’s support to the Ukrainian school reform "Learning Together" is a four-year cooperation programme that began between Ukraine and Finland in July 2018, and was joined by the EU at the end of the same year. The project is funded by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Finland (EUR 6 million) and the EU (EUR 2 million) and is implemented by the Finnish Consulting Group Ltd in cooperation with the University of Helsinki.
The expected long-term impact of the Learning Together project is to improve the access to the quality education in Ukraine. Additional EU support is aimed at improving the teaching of Ukrainian as a second language among national minorities in accordance with the Roadmap for the Implementation of Article 7 “Language of Education” of the Law of Ukraine “On Education”. The project has nationwide coverage, while support for improving Ukrainian language teaching is focused on Chernivtsi and Zakarpattia regions.
The overall objective for Learning Together is improved access to quality school education (grades 1-12) for all in Ukraine. The specific objectives of the Project lie within the following areas:
Specific objective 1: Teaching and administration in schools meet NUS standards (school teachers of grades 1-6 implement the new standards; school administrators increased their knowledge on management, communication, and mediation topics; Ukrainian language teachers in schools with national minorities languages of instruction apply the pedagogical practices of teaching/learning Ukrainian as a second language; STEM teachers at schools with national minorities languages of instruction feel confident about teaching their subjects in Ukrainian).
Specific objective 2: Citizens and education professionals support the NUS reform (parents and principals have positive attitudes towards NUS reform).
Specific objective 3: Learning environment in grades 1-12 is strengthened (teachers and principals’ knowledge on integrating ICT in the educational sector increased; students study the Ukrainian language through IT tools developed and language camps).
As a result of the project, the In-service Teacher Training is enhanced to comply with NUS reform (including Language Component trainings for teachers in schools with national minorities languages of instruction in Chernivtsi and Zakarpattia regions), together with the increased capacity of In-service Teacher Training Institutes and Centres for Teachers’ Professional Development. The training contents in Pre-Service Teacher Training for the New Ukrainian School and courses on teaching Ukrainian using the methodology of teaching a second language are piloted in the selected HEIs. The management skills and practices at the school level administration will be enhanced through project training activities. The project aims to increase the public awareness of education reform, benefits of bilingualism and multilingualism, as well as the importance of the state language, through its communication campaigns. The project also works on 1) improving the capacity to develop and select education materials, 2) launching the system of tracking and development of ICT competencies of educators, as well as 3) development of sets of textbooks and practical tools for teaching/learning the Ukrainian language to national minorities. Due to the Russian aggression against Ukraine, a number of activities had to be reviewed and modified in the spring of 2022.The modules on psychological support to children affected by the war were developed and presented to the participants (INSETT and PRESETT).The additional languages and chapters developed for the online applications to meet the needs of the children currently residing outside of Ukraine. In the autumn of 2022, the Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine requested the project to assist with printing of textbooks for 5th Grade on natural sciences. The budget for this activity is 1.23 mln euro. The activity was approved in early 2023, and is to be carried out during the first half of 2023.