One eye cries while the other laughs: Relief for graduates in a Ukrainian fashion

After ten years, the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine has finally adopted a decree on external independent test examinations (ZNOs), according to which students belonging to national minority communities will be given a separate assessment.

From the next academic year the language of instruction of secondary school graduates will be taken into account. Although this can be appreciated as a positive step, the national communities have not been treated so well this time either: in the title and text of the regulation their members are listed as students with special educational needs.

Special educational needs are determined by an expert committee. The categories include individuals with locomotor, sensory, mental or speech disabilities, or cumulatively disabled children.

Ukrainian legislation thus continues its degradative rhetoric and treats the education of national minorities in their native language as a kind of disability.

The Decree No. 952 accepted on November 14 can be read below:

On the category of individuals with special educational needs

According to Article 19 of part 8 of the Ukrainian Law on Education, and in accordance with the decision of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine, the assessment of external independent testing shall take into account the needs of the following students with special educational needs:
1. Individuals who completed their full secondary education in a language not belonging to the Slavic language family.
2. Individuals who completed their secondary education in the languages of indigenous peoples in Ukraine.

V. Groysman