Palacký University in Olomouc has opened its own campus in Erbil, the capital of Iraqi Kurdistan. The university currently offers a course in petroleum engineering within its life-long learning programme and hopes to extend its activities by up to six regular BA courses in the future. I spoke to Martin Kudláček, Palacký University’s Vice-Rector for International Relations, and I first asked him how the project was initiated:
Czechs are marking the 51st anniversary of the self-immolation of Prague
university student Jan Palach, who set himself alight in protest at apathy
in the face of the Soviet occupation.
Memorial ceremonies have been held in Palach’s Central Bohemian hometown of Všetaty, where his childhood home recently became a museum in his honour, and towns and cities around the country.
In Prague people have gathered to pay homage to his memory on Wenceslas Square where he set himself alight, at Charles University, where he studied, and at Olsany Cemetery where he is buried.
Jan Palach died in agony on January 19, three days after setting himself on fire. Some 200,000 people turned out for his funeral. In death, he would become known as “the conscience of the nation”.
The Czech Republic will not be offering grants to students from developing
countries next year due to a cut in finances, Czech Radio reported on
In the years between 2013 and 2019 the country annually financed the studies of 130 students from the developing world at Czech universities, paying them 14 thousand crowns a month in addition to accommodation.
The program is being curtailed after the finance and foreign ministries failed to get an additional 13.5 million crowns to keep it going.
The 112 million earmarked for the project this year will only suffice to allow the students already here to conclude their studies.
Students at Czech schools have improved in their reading, mathematics and
science abilities, according to Education Ministry and Czech School
Inspection officials, who unveiled the latest Programme for International
School Assessment rankings at a press conference on Tuesday.
Out of the 79 countries and economic regions that took part in the rankings, the Czech Republic placed 25 in reading comprehension, 22 in mathematics and 21 in science. Altogether Czech students improved their scores in all categories compared to the last measurement which took place in 2015, also exceeding EU average scores.
However, the results did not reach the scores achieved in the early 2000s and also showed a regional disparity of education quality. According to Chief School Inspector Tomáš Zatloukal, skill differences between pupils in Prague and the Ústí nad Labem Region are equivalent to roughly two grades.
The Programme for International Student Assessment, commonly referred to as PISA is currently one of the largest and most respected education level measurement rankings. Organised by the OECD, it takes place every three years.
A group of historians, educators and archivists – including from Czech Radio – has rolled out a digital app designed to stimulate students’ interest in using primary sources. The overall aim of the HistoryLab project is to develop students’ historical literary and critical thinking, and help teachers craft interactive, multimedia lesson plans.
Charles University students who for several days blocked the rectorate
building have agreed to end their occupation strike. They also withdrew
their demand that Rector Tomáš Zima resign immediately.
Following a three-hour meeting on Monday evening with the protesters, the Academic Senate agreed to adopt a resolution that Charles University would proactively address fighting climate change, ČTK reports.
Zima has been in the spotlight in recent weeks for his role in establishing a Czech-Chinese Centre at Charles University, where some events seem to have been funded by the Chinese Embassy. The Academic Senate has agreed to review Zima's mandate and seek climate neutrality by 2022.
Students demonstrating in the main building of Charles University in Prague
against climate change and the current rector of the university Tomas Zima
say that they will continue occupying the venue at least until the end of
this weekend. The main entrance to the building has been occupied by
students from a number of Czech universities since Wednesday.
The protestors insist that Mr. Zima is a barrier for the university's efforts to tackle climate change, but the rector says that this is nonsense and refuses to resign. The university authorities have offered to resolve the issue through a debate at the next Charles University academic senate meeting, which will include a special discussion on climate change.
Underpaid and swarmed with paperwork, headmasters at Czech schools do not have it easy. At least according to a new study published by CERGE-EI, the Economics Institute of the Czech Academy of Sciences. It found that directors of Czech schools have the highest administrative burden compared to their counterparts in other EU countries. Partly a result of excessive decentralisation, the study claims.
Archaeologists unearth seven graves dating back to Great Moravian Empire
“Einstein in Bohemia” – Part II: how alienation in ‘half-barbaric’ Prague led him to a new theory of gravity, eventual love of a free Czechoslovakia
“Einstein in Bohemia” – part 1: how a Prague sojourn sparked his theory of general relativity, journey of self-discovery
Valentine’s Day 1945 - When the Americans bombed Prague
Film about tragic fate of great Czech actress highlights communist atrocities in the 1950s