Kharkiv Region Educational workers forced to join Party of the Regions
Educational workers in the Kharkiv region complain that school heads are being dismissed for refusing to join the Party of the Regions. The local opposition has spoken of such cases, whereas education officials firmly deny this.
Deputy Head of the Smirnivsk Educational Complex of the Losivsk District Council, Larisa Kochan says that she resigned herself. She says that she simply didn’t wait to be personally asked to change her political preferences. The teacher of Ukrainian Language and Literature who was “Teacher of the Year “ in 2009 is at present a member of a political force in opposition to the government. She says that in the school where she works the administrative pressure is already palpable and not all the teachers are able to stand up to it.
“The other teachers, of course, who suggested, for example, being in the electoral commission, or an observer, or even an authorized representative, agreed. People are frightened”, she says.
The former Deputy Head of a school is again working as a teacher. She says that her boss is seriously considering the proposal of the party in power.
The head of a department in a rural school who did not wish to be named also told Radio Svoboda that “a person who has not joined the Party of the Regions cannot be a school head or deputy head these days.”
Officials in the Kharkiv Regional Department of Education categorically deny this. The Head of the Department Roman Shapoval says that this is simply impossible, and couldn’t possibly happen.
Parents are upset about pre-election posters in schools
Parents have complained of portraits of Henadiy Kernes, the Acting Mayor (Party of the Regions) standing for office in their children’s schools. Natalia Zarudna saw such a photograph in the corridor of her daughter’s school.
Some parents speak of Kernes’ photo hanging directly in the classrooms. Again the Head of the Education Department denies this.