Switch to Latvian-only education to happen faster

The transition to teaching in Latvian exclusively could be carried out in two instead of six years, as was originally planned, said Prime Minister Krišjānis Kariņš following the meeting of the government's coalition partners on Monday, June 6.

On Tuesday, June 7, the Cabinet supported these amendments to the Education and General Education Law. The amendments only affect the transition to teaching in Latvian, which could take place from September 2023, explained Justice Minister Jānis Bordāns (Conservatives). The draft law provides that after a gradual transition, by September 2025 all pupils will be trained in Latvian and following a uniform program in Latvia.

As of September 1, 2023, grades 1, 4 and 7 will be taught in Latvian only, as of 2024 they will be joined by grades 2, 5 and 8, and as of 2025 – grades 3, 6 and 9.

“In addition, regulation will be developed on the skills of the national language of teachers and school principals, so that these schools can speak understandably and according to the values laid down in the Constitution,” Bordāns said.

Persons who cannot speak the national language at a C (advanced/proficient) level will not be able to work at an education institution.

The coalition had previously agreed on a gradual transition to education only in Latvian within six years.

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