It seems that Poland had a smoother political
transition than other Eastern European countries in
the return to democracy from their former
totalitarian regime. How did Polish education adapt
itself to the unavoidable social changes during the
transition? Was there any power which emerged as the
controlling agent of the national education, or was
education divided, fragmented? By reviewing Polish
education from its highly academic past in the 13th
century, and the struggle it must face to preserve
its national identity, the author tries to follow
the hesitant but eagerly forward steps taken by the
population in its march towards a more liberal and
Il semble que la Pologne a bénéficié d'une
transition politique plus douce que les autres pays
de l'Europe orientale dans son retour à la
démocratie de son ancien régime totalitaire. Comment
le système d'éducation de la Pologne s'adapte-t-il
aux changements sociaux qui sont inévitables pendant
la transition? Y-a-t-il une autre puissance qui
s'émerge comme le nouvel agent de contrôle de
l'éducation nationale? Ou est-ce que l'éducation est
devenue divisée, fragmentée? En retraçant
l'éducation polonaise depuis son illustre période
académique du 13è siècle, et des luttes ardentes
qu'elle a dû mener pour garder son identité
nationale, l'auteur cherche à suivre les étapes
prises par le peuple polonais dans leur marche vers
une éducation plus libérale et plus humaniste.
In 1990, the Republic of Poland replaced the Polish
People's Republic formerly known as Poland. Like
other Eastern European countries, the Republic of
Poland renounced its socialist past to embrace a
more democratic ideology. A new era has since
unfolded for the Polish people with all the exciting
changes involved in coping with an open market
economy and a free enterprise. If today, Poland
fares better than most socialist countries
in transition, in its march
towards economic freedom, this is due mainly to
the fact that its government
has made overnight a 180-degree turn in economic
policy, accelerating the transformation of its
economy from a centrally
controlled system to a democratic open-market system
1. In turn, the education
system has also undergone drastic changes although
it has not broken out of the
centrally controlled agency, the Ministry of
I/ HISTORICAL OVERVIEW
Situated in the heartland of Eastern Europe, Poland,
during the past 200 years,
suffered enormously from the expansion and
imperialism of its
neighbours: Austria, Prussia and Russia. At the end
of the 18th century Poland
was occupied by these three neighbouring powers.
After 120 years of
partition and oppression, Poland enjoyed a short
period of nationhood during
the years separating the two World Wars. The country
then endured a short
bi-partition between the Nazi and the Russian
occupying armies, which
resulted in Poland becoming a satellite in the
Soviet empire. This lasted until
1990, when the Solidarity Movement liberated Poland
again and reinstated it among
the pro-democratic nations of the free world.
1- Education in the
kingdom of Poland
The former Polish state was established at the end
of the 10th century,
Christianity was introduced to Poland at about the
same time. As churches and
cathedrals were being built, collegiate schools to
train local priests were also
founded. During the 12th and 13th centuries, monks
from Western Europe were invited to Poland to teach
architectural design and
agricultural techniques. The
learners soon became the learned and institutions of
higher education were
established. Among them was the Cracow Academy which
was founded in 1364 and became an internationally
renowned centre for studies
in astronomy in the 15th century. As more foreigners
came to attend Poland's
institutions of higher education, a tolerant and
open atmosphere gradually developed in the field.
This in turn attracted many other scholars who were
being persecuted in their European countries. They
came to Poland seeking refuge and offering, in
return, their knowledge and philosophies. Some
these scholars opened new schools such as the Arians
Gymnesia in Lubartów and Raków,
the Gymnasium of the Bohemian Brethen at Leszno, the
Gymnesia of the Lutherans at Torún
and Gdansk, the reformed
Piarist schools and the
Collegium Nobilium (Tomiak, 1988, p. 1006). The
Catholic Church continued to maintain a very strong
influence in education, especially in the rural
districts where churches and schools commonly
operated in tandem.
In 1773, Seym, the Polish national parliament,
created the Commission on National Education. This
was the first Ministry of Education in Europe.
2 The Commission tried to reform the education
system by placing il under state control and by
creating a new integrated curriculum which
encompassed mathematics, natural sciences and the
Polish language. Education at the primary level was
to be geared toward preparing students for real life
by introducing agricultural techniques, handicrafts
and trade into the syllabus. The Commission also
introduced textbook production by a central
organization. 'Me Commission's efforts were
short-lived because the Polish state was overtaken
and divided between Austria, Prussia and Russia in
2- Education during the partition of Poland
Poland ceased to exist. Its territory was
partitioned into three sectors. Each sector came
under the administration of either Russia, Prussia
or Austria. Teaching of the Polish language was
abolished in all but the Austrian sector.
Education in the Russian sector was designed for the
elite and was not accessible to peasant children.
The main purpose of education in this sector was the
russification of Polish society. Only at the
beginning of the 20th century was teaching of the
Polish language made possible in elementary schools.
In the Prussian sector, the situation was no better.
However, schools were extended to include the
attendance of country youth together with children
of the nobility. The reason for this freer access
was that the Prussian authority believed that
education was the main vehicle for Germanization.
But Polish educators resisted this Germanization by
organizing private schooling in churches. In order
to obtain some skilled labour, the occupying
authority also began vocational training. This was
started with the Mining Academy in Kielce, the
Forestry School in Warsaw and the Agronomic
Institute in Marymount (K.R. Wulff, 1992, p. 9).
In the Austrian sector, the educational situation
was slightly better. The Polish language was taught,
not only in primary and secondary schools but also
in two universities of the sector.
Despite many difficulties and much oppression, the
entrenched influence of the Catholic church in
education and the strong Polish nationalism
successfully resisted the abolition of Polish
education, keeping it well protected and ready to
bloom at the first sight of national rebirth.
3- Education in Poland from 1918 to 1945
The independent state of Poland emerged at the end
of the First World War and, while it enjoyed a new
renaissance in national education, it needed
to address important issues such as the redrawing of
its borders and the new composition of its
population. Poland also had to contend with the high
rate of illiteracy resulting front the century long
partition. In areas of the former Russian sector,
the illiteracy rate ran as high as 65% in the
countryside. In addition, Poland also had to
accommodate the education of the important ethnic
minorities who comprised over 30 percent of the
population. These were mainly Ukrainians, Germans,
Jews, and Byelorussians.
In 1918, only 47 percent of the age cohort attended
primary schools. Thc task of providing education to
the children was enormous, as many teachers had only
an elementary education and less than 33 percent of
the teachers were actually graduates of a teachers'
college. The Catholic church continued to have a
strong influence in education as Polish schools
remained a part of the church (Rust, V.D., 1992,
p.389). During twenty years of the interwar period,
educational development was steady but slow.
Only about one-third of primary school leavers
continued their education in secondary schools,
including vocational schools (Komorowska, H. & A
Janowski, 1994, p. 4543).
The outbreak of World War II halted all these
efforts as Poland was invaded from the west
Germany and from the east by the Soviet Union. These
two invading powers immediately began the
destruction of the polish
intelligentsia through deportation of the Poland
elite to the concentration camps on the German side,
and to Siberia, on the Russian side. Only elementary
education was allowed to Polish children. Secondary
and higher educational institutes were officially
closed for the duration of the war, as Poles could
not enter higher schools. Education in the
German-occupied territory had only one aim: to
provide German industry with skilled workers and
forced labour. Education then was intended to train
a work force in which "No Pole shall rise above the
rank of foreman" (Swiecki 1977, 331) and in
which every Pole would be trained for this dual
obligation: to work and to
On the Russian side, the people did not fare any
better. Training was provided only to those who
espoused the communist ideology and were deemed to
fit in with the proletarian struggle. All those
suspected of strong nationalist loyalty were
To counter the destruction of Polish entity and
culture, an underground education system was
established. Secret teaching of the Polish language
and of forbidden subjects such as Polish literature,
history and geography were organized locally and
spread throughout the country despite the fact that
teachers and pupils had to work a compulsory 12-hour
day and that there were no suitable classrooms. This
underground education made it possible for over
10,000 students to receive a university level
instruction in the Polish language, and over 100,000
students to receive instruction at the secondary
level. But above all, this teaching facilitated the
preservation of Polish national unity and cultural
According to the Yalta and Potsdam
treaties, Poland became a satellite state of the
Soviet empire. Its boundaries were redrawn. On the
eastern front, one third of the Polish territory was
annexed and became an integral part of
the Soviet Union. On the western and northern side,
a large area formerly belonging to Germany was given
to Poland. Mass migration occurred across the nation
and was reflected in the shaping of the new
EDUCATION IN THE POLISH PEOPLE'S REPUBLIC
1- and finance
When the Polish People's Republic came into being,
only 55 percent of the age cohort attended primary
schools in the rural districts. 'Me illiteracy rate
ran as high as 18 percent of the entire population.
The education system
which was linked to communist ideology and
transformed into an instrument to promote socialist
changes, was imposed upon the nation.
The education system was tightly and centrally
controlled. Its personnel were obligated to show
loyalty to the ruling party. Education became
secular, free, and compulsory for all children up to
fourteen years of age.
importance of education was over-shadowed during the
years of the Cold War and education expenditures
never rose higher than five per cent of the gross
national product. Table 1 provides the total
educational expenditure between 1964 and 1990 and
its percentage over the gross national product.
During this period, education was not seen as an
integral right, but as a privilege handed out by the
authority. However, the government's effort to
eliminate illiteracy -- although a necessary step
for indoctrination -- should not be underestimated
(see Overview of Poland's education system until
1990, Appendix 1)
Billion of zloty
% of GNP
Table 1 - Public expenditures on education
Sources:1958, 1968: corresponding International
Yearbook of Education 1985 to 1990: corresponding
Statistical Yearbook (UNESCO).
The education system was centrally
administered and controlled by the Minister of
Education. Some vocational schools were also jointly
controlled by another Ministry due to their
technical nature. For example medical academies were
administered by the Ministry of Health.
The country was divided into 49
voivodships (states). In each voivodship
there was one kurator
(superintendent) who represented the Minister of
Education and supervised all educational matters.
The education body in each voivodship was the
kuratorium. Kindergartens were financed by
the gminy (county), while primary and
secondary schools were financed by the kuratorium.
Universities and other higher education institutions
were financed by the Ministry of Education, although
these institutions were more autonomous regarding
the teaching curricula and daily activities.
Enrolment in different education levels is given in
Until 1990, school textbooks had been
produced by the two state-controlled publishing
houses, the Publishing House for School and
Pedagogical Books and Our Bookshop. The
Minister of Education sanctioned all curricula and
teaching programmes. The educational philosophy of
this period showed the strong influence of French
educational philosophies of the 1930s. Education
aimed to produce good socialist citizens who were
ready to join the work force, loyal to the ruling
party and who never questioned the established
hierarchy of power. The authorities ensured that
textbooks closely reflected this policy.
Determined efforts were made to make the pupils
identify with the model of a socialist man (sic)
committed to building a socialist society, acting in
conformity with the principles of socialist
morality, manifesting his respect for and love of
work and anxious to master the basic tenets of
Marxism-Leninism (Tomiak, 1988, p. 1008).
During this period, teachers were
expected to represent the interests of the state and
the party's powerful organization rather than
address the interests and needs of schoolchildren.
Officially, the Catholic church's influence in
education was sidelined and replaced by the
Communist Party's ideology. Religious studies were
abolished. The education system became secular, an
instrument of the state to expand totalitarianism
based on the Soviet model. Indoctrination in most
courses and a submissive attitude toward the
authority were the norm. Promotion to higher
positions and even to higher education was firmly
linked to party allegiance and hierarchy.
Pre-primary and primary education
Children from 3 to 6 years old had the
option of attending kindergarten schools or
kindergarten classes in primary schools.
Kindergarten schools operated almost year round and
stayed open between 7 to 11 hours a day depending on
their location. In rural areas kindergarten schools
were usually seasonal depending upon the peasants'
needs as well as depending on the kind of
agricultural work that they were involved in.
Kindergarten classes were part of the primary
schools and were staffed by teachers receiving
special training programmes. All 6 year old children
attended grade 0, a preparatory year class, which
was compulsory. Only 51 percent of pre-school age
children attended kindergarten in Poland. The
percentage may have been higher in other Eastern
countries, such as Hungary, where there was 100%
In 1962 6,
education was compulsory for the primary level, from
grades 1 to 8 (an innovation of the 1961 law on the
education system - which required 8 years of
compulsory education instead of 7)
7. More than 98 percent of the age
cohort attended school. The school year ran from
September to June and there were 6 to 7 periods per
day. Each period consisted of 45 minutes. Curricula
and course syllabuses were determined by the
Ministry of Education, although in some cases, the
kurator might authorize a school to follow
its own individual curriculum. Students were graded
throughout the school year on a scale of "2" to "5",
with 5 being the highest mark. Students were
promoted from one class to the next according to
their final average mark. All but those who had only
"2" marks were promoted to the next grade. Students
whose mark was only "2" in a certain subject needed
to write an examination before the school year
began. If they did not receive a passing mark in
this examination they would have to repeat one year.
Many schools offered
an after-school programme. This programme permitted
children of young ages (grades 1 to 3) to come to
school early, at about 7:00 a.m. before class
started, and they stayed in school after class, up
to 5:00 p.m. when their parents or a member of the
family arrived to pick them up. Children attending
spent their extra time doing homework, reading
books, playing games inside or outside, weather
permitting, under the supervision of special
teachers. Teachers who operated
received special training and had a workload of 26
hours per week, compared to the 18 hours per week
workload of the full time teaching staff. Older
students (grade 4 and above) were not part of this
programme and often chose to fend for themselves.
Computers were still a rarity at the
primary level and were only available in some
schools in urban areas. High costs and language
problems, as most computer software was written for
the English-speaking market, were the deterrents in
the use of computers in public schools. As new
software was introduced in both Polish and Russian,
some private schools focused on this market by
offering courses in computer science as well as
classes in computer literacy. In urban areas,
computer clubs had regular meetings and saw their
memberships growing. However, until 1990, computers
were considered and actually were a luxury more than
a learning aid or a necessity.
3- Secondary education
About 96 8
percent of students completing primary schools went
on to post-primary schools. There were three main
types of secondary schools.
First there were the lycea or general
secondary school with a 4-year curriculum, with
classes in science immersion, arts immersion and
physical education. Then there were the
technikums for techniczna, or technical
school, with a 4-year or 5-year curriculum which
specialized as secondary medical schools and
economics schools. Finally there were the
zawodowky, or basic vocational schools with a
3-year curriculum in which students learned a trade.
In the 1960s, students completing
primary school had to compete for a place in a
lyceum or a technikum through an
examination based on the Polish language and
Mathematics. This examination was abolished in the
1970s but was reinstated again in 1986.
During the 1970s and part of the 1980s,
the selection of students entering these secondary
schools was based primarily on the students' marks
in the last year of primary school. Students with
the highest marks usually went on to the lycea
to follow an academic track. Students with 3 to 4
marks went to the technikums and followed the
secondary technical track. The rest of the students
enrolled in a Basic Vocational School.
In May of the last school year, students
in the lycea and technikums had to
write the matura or school leaving
examination. Until 1982, the first part of this
examination consisted of two compulsory written
tests, one in Polish and the other in Mathematics.
Since 1983, students still have had to write the
compulsory Polish test, but could choose
Mathematics, History or Biology for the second
written test. Those who received a passing grade
went on to participate in the second part of the
examination, taking two oral tests, one in Polish
and the other in either Mathematics, History,
Biology or Geography. Those students who failed
would have to repeat the last year and write the
examination again in May, although, each student
could only take this examination twice.
A hundred days before the first
examination, students of the graduating class make a
presentation, then celebrate until dawn, commonly
with a ball, supervised by their teachers. This
celebration is known as studniówka. In
another celebration, po maturze, called
absolutorium, students of the younger classes
offer flowers and red ribbons to the graduating
class. These two celebrations stress the importance
of the matura in the Polish student's life.
Students in basic vocational schools did
not write the matura. They were trained to
become craftpersons, tailors, hairdressers ... and
often joined the work force upon completion of their
secondary education. There was little for them in
non-formal or continuing education. There were also
two-year job schools which accepted students having
completed grade 6 in a primary school. The job
school did not grant certification. This programme
consisted partly of apprenticeship and partly of
on the job training.
There were almost no private schools
until 1989. Once established, these schools became
more popular because of their teaching programmes
which were unconventional according to Polish
standards. In these schools, foreign languages and
computer science courses were emphasized more than
in state-run schools. The tuition fees were high,
ranging from 1,000,000 to 1,500,000 Z»
a month, while the average monthly income was less
than 2,000,000 Z».
4- Tertiary education
Until 1990, post-secondary institutions,
universities, academies and colleges in Poland,
determined the number of students to be admitted to
the first year of each institution. A student-
holder of the matura, selected an institution
then competed against the other candidates for a
place in this institution through an entry
examination organized and processed by that
institution. This examination could be written or
oral, or both. An oral examination lasted
approximately 15 minutes for each candidate. Then
the students would study for three months, from July
to September to complete the entry requirements. The
evaluation committee of each institution was made up
of two professors. The maximum mark was 50 and those
who scored above 27 would likely get a place. Some
institutions provided students with the questions to
be asked at their entry examinations so they could
Higher education was free. The Ministry
of Education supervised universities, higher
technical schools, agricultural schools and
teacher-training institutes. Other ministries
supervised 11 medical academies with a total learner
population of 36,000, two merchant marine schools
with 2,000 midshipmen, and six physical education
schools enrolling a total of 9,500 students.
There was also a private university, the
Catholic Lublin University and two theological
academies. Besides these academic institutions, 900
post-matura technical schools with 2-year and 3-year
curricula enrolled 111,000 students. These schools
can be considered as post-secondary vocational
colleges in Western Europe. In all, Poland counted
about 400,000 students in tertiary education, a mere
10% of the children entering grade 1 in any year of
Higher technical schools
Institutions under the Ministry of
At the present time, approximately 10% of the Polish
work force hold a tertiary education degree or
equivalent, mostly in technical and scientific
disciplines. Women account for more than half of
After World War II, Poland had to face
the biggest shortage in teachers, as thousands of
them were killed during the war. To cope with this
problem the state had to accept a variation in
educational standards for teachers. Table 3 presents
the requirements a person must satisfy in order to
teach in a division. These requirements are in
effect since 1990.
There has always been a shortage of
teachers, especially at the primary level. According
to the 1988 census, the population increased by
700,000 annually. This means that in the late 1980s,
over 600,000 children joined the education system.
As there were about 450,000 students graduating from
high schools (from a total of less than 1,800,000
enrolled in 4-year secondary education in 1980s),
the number of newly graduated teachers could barely
meet the increase in enrolment.
Retired teachers were encouraged to stay
on without losing their retirement benefits.
However, salary and job satisfaction were the main
problem areas. According to Bartz and Kullas,
(1991), a teacher in Poland earned less than an
industrial worker (Table 4).
PRIVATE To Teach
Primary (Grades 1-3)
* Initial Teaching Studies a
* University or College (5-year) or
* University Extramural Studies b
Primary (Grades 4-8)
* University or College (5-year).
- Academic subjects
* University or College c, MA
- Vocational subjects
* Depending on subjects
Some degree of higher level training or
MA in Engineering.
Special Education Schools
* Post graduate programme for regular
practicing school teachers.
Requirements for teachers in effect in 1990
from a lyceum would attend a post-grammar school for
two years (31-hour/week for 37 weeks in the first
year and 29 weeks in the second year for a total of
approximately 2000 hours).
holding the Initial Teaching Studies certificate had
to pass an entrance examination to enter this
programme which comprised 6 semesters of study at a
university, for a total of 700 hours.
completed a five-year programme at a University, and
graduated with a thesis (MA degree).
Table 4 shows the plummeting regard
towards the teaching profession. According to this
view, it is not surprising that the state had to
devise different means with which to provide schools
with new teachers. Quick correspondence and evening
courses were established. For those wanting to teach
preschool, there was either a six-year course in
preschool education for those who already had a
grade 8 education, or a two-year course for those
graduating from the lyceum. For other levels,
students could enrol in the universities as well as
the teacher-training schools. Additional training
became available in the 1980s to upgrade teachers'
qualifications. Although the demand of teachers
might have been met in terms of quantity,
professional quality suffered. The greater the
number of "less than qualified" teachers who entered
the teaching field, the less they could expect an
increase in wages. This not only discouraged
prospective candidates to the profession, but also
reduced the number of existing teaching staff.
Teachers turned to other better-paying jobs in the
Rank in 1972
Rank in 1987
Compared social ranking (partial list)
If financial incentive and prestige are
not increased, the shortage of qualified teachers
will never be resolved and the problem will always
remain a vicious circle. Education at all levels
will suffer, and the national journey towards
prosperity will be longer and tougher. One of the
possible solutions is that Poland should seek to
increase the number of its higher education students
studying abroad. Another is to appeal to the mass of
Polish immigrants who could come back to rebuild the
IN LIEU OF CONCLUSION: THE NEW EDUCATION SYSTEM
Since 1989, changes which were brought
about by the Solidarity movement became apparent in
many aspects of life in Poland. Many changes
affecting the education system took place at the
grass-roots level and slowly became entrenched in
the regional school system. In July 1991, the Polish
Parliament enacted the law reforming the education
system, sanctioning the changes which were already
The state monopoly on education has been
abolished. Marxist ideology has been discarded from
the curriculum. Private schools have been
established. The range of grades in the primary
education has changed from 2 to 5 to 1 to 6, with 2
becoming the passing grade. In higher education,
tuition remains free but students must pay a fee for
any repeated year. Thus the system seems to embark
on a pluralistic course in education. The 1990 draft
stipulated that good education starts from home as
it attempted to encourage and empower parents to
educate their children
in harmony with their respective religious or
philosophical convictions (Szebenyi, 1992, p. 21).
The changes have also permitted the re-establishment
of private education. There were only 2000 students
in the first non-state schools, commonly known as
social schools, in 1991. However, tuition fee was
very high. In addressing the fear of elitism in
education, the Ministry of Public Education declared
that a system of scholarships would be established
to assure everyone equal access to these schools.
However, as funding reserved to education does not
cover the maintenance of all existing schools, such
a promise would be very difficult to keep.
One of the most controversial changes
was Articles 2 and 4 of the new Law, which legalized
the involvement of religious instruction in
education as well as the inclusion of formal
religious instruction in the public school
curriculum. Opponents to this introduction voiced
their fear that the Marxist ideology "the party
never fails" would disappear only to be replaced by
the Catholic ideology "the Pope never fails"
Textbooks, teaching materials and
teacher training remain challenges for the new
education system. The Ministry of Public Education
still controls the education system. The curriculum
still remains centrally developed as the Ministry
wishes to maintain a certain coherence and equality
in education. The school structure also remains
unchanged (Szebenyi, 1992). In September 7, 1991,
the Ministry of National Education enacted Ustawa
- O Systemie OÑwiaty
a very detailed Regulation of the Education
System, due to take effect in April 1993. The
4-year lyceum curriculum is given in appendix 3.
Poland educators understand that if the
country is to double its economic growth it has to
train a skilled labour force, capable of dealing
with the advanced technology of the modern world.
Such a skill-level in the labour force can not be
attained with Poland=s
basic vocational school system. The experience of
developed countries proves that this is only
possible through the general secondary school
system. The problem is now to reduce the over 45% of
the secondary age cohort in basic vocational schools
and increase the enrolment in general secondary
schools from 23% to 54% (see appendix 1). Qualified
teaching staff, appropriate school facilities and
advanced training materials are urgently needed.
Will Poland have the human and financial resources
and the determination to cope with this demand?
Just as the central power is loosening
its grip over education through the democratic
movement, another power is coming onto the
scene. The Catholic Church argues that its schools
were nationalized in the 1940s and requests the
restoration of its wealth. It appears to many Poles
that they are witnessing the switching of one
central power over to another
humane one perhaps, but still a centrally
controlling authority. To face this challenge, the
Polish people may benefit from the liberation lesson
of the Spanish education (Boyd-Barrett, 1991).
The transformation of the political and
economical structure in Poland occurred subtly. The
transition from a highly and centrally controlled
education system to a more democratic one may not be
that smooth. Poland hopes to be able to face the
challenges with wisdom and patience, to promote an
education system accessible to all and realize the
equal output and equal outcome for all its students,
in order to guarantee a brighter and happier future
for the nation.e nation.
1. See for example M. Kozakiewicz=s
ministerial address "Poland=s
Return to Europe" in 1990.
2. Its was commonly hailed in Polish
history that the Commission was the world=s
first Ministry of Education, however, before the
10th century, China and other countries under
Chinese influence have established the Ministry of
Protocol which looked after the education system,
the examination system, and thus functioned as a
modern ministry of education.
3. Not until Perestroïka that the
Russian admitted to mass killings of Polish
nationalist troops especially at Katyn.
4. Yalta, a port on the southern Crimea
on the Black Sea, where in February 1945, Churchill,
Roosevelt and Stalin met to partition Europe.
Potsdam is the capital of Brandenburg, where
Roosevelt, Stalin and Churchill (then Attlee) met in
July and August 1945 after the collapse of the Third
5. According to Szebenyi, the curator
for a voivode was appointed directly by the Minister
- after consultations with the competent voivode and
the union representing teachers of this voivode.
6. The Resolution on the Development of
the System of education passed by the Polish
parliament in 1961 guaranteed basic (primary)
education to its citizens and also stated that "the
educational system aims at preparing qualified
people for work in the economy and national culture.
Citizens should be prepared through education, to
become builders of socialism" (Tomiak, 1988, p.
7. The educational reform initiated
between 1971-1973, intended to make compulsory
education up to grade 10 starting in 1978. However,
this plan was not carried out as it was not endorsed
by the teachers=
branch of Solidarity (Szebenyi, 1992).
8. In reality, this percentage was much
lower. Some sources cited it as low as 51%.
9. Laws on the reform of general
education system were enacted in 1948, and laws on
the reform of vocational school system, 1951.
10. See Suzanne Oster=s
"Erziehung zu Ehe und Familie in der Polnischen
Schule" [Education for Marriage and the Family in
the Polish school] in Pädagogik und Schule in Ost
und West, No 2. 1989, pp. 83-90. After 14 years
of teaching sex education without a textbook, the
Ministry of education published "Preparation for
Life in the Family", the only available textbook on
the subject. But it was viewed as promoting life
style not compatible with the catholic moral. The
Catholic Church was strong enough to force the
withdrawal of the textbook.
Bartz, B. and Z. Kullas. Die wesentlichen Aspekte
der Bildungsreform in Polen (Essential Aspects of
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Boyd-Barrett, Oliver. State and Church in Spanish
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(eds.) The International Encyclopedia of
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dnia 7 wrzeÑnia
1991 r. - O Systemia OÑwiaty
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[Regulation of 7 September 1991, on the Education
System with directives]. Warsaw: Ministry of
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Delta Kappan, Jan 1992.
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Wulff, K.R. 1992. Education in Poland - Past,
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University Press of America7,
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