Aliaksandr Lukashenka Limits Foreign Recreation to Senior Pupils

2005 2005-10-10T10:00:00+0300 1970-01-01T03:00:00+0300 en The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”

President Lukashenka has signed the decree that imposes age limitations to foreign travels of Belarusian pupils for health improvement. According to this decree, during the curriculum year it is allowed to take abroad for more than 15 days only pupils of 1-4 grades of the primary school and 1-5 grades of specialized schools. The official version states the decree is necessary for saving the regularity of the curriculum process. Teachers think that the real intention of the authorities is to limit the contacts of schoolchildren with the West.

This decree was enforced in October, but the real age limits have been applied since the beginning of the year. That’s why for many senior pupils the way abroad was closed earlier. Meanwhile, the majority of them grew up standing in the line for health improvement travels, because it is impossible to take abroad all children in summer only, said Liudmila Marushkievich, worker of Chernobyl’s Children fund.

According to the official information, about 130 public charity organizations have licenses for organization of children’s travels for abroad for improvement of their health. Thanks to their efforts thousands of Belarusian pupils became healthier. The limitations of foreign travelling is imposed not because of the care about the quality of their education, but in order to limit their contacts with free world, thinks Uladzimir Kolas, director of the liquidated Belarusian lyceum:
-- We see that for the present authorities it is necessary to put ideological blinders on young people’s eyes so that they could see no alternative, no real life running on in free world. That’s the angle at which this decree is to be seen.

According to the decree, organizers of recreation travels must inform ministries of education and health care and the department of the humanitarian activity of Presidential Administration about facts of non-returning of children or the persons who escort them, within day’s term.