Nearly 1,000 Ukrainians in Croatian schools quickly master the language

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ZAGREB, April 18 (Hina) – Nearly 1,000 Ukrainian children are enrolled in Croatian kindergartens, primary and secondary schools, and their biggest problem is the language, but they quickly master Croatian in order to better integrate into the new environment.

Of the 983 children who arrived in Croatia due to the war in Ukraine, 838 were enrolled in primary school, 64 in secondary school and 80 in kindergarten.

To date, 116 primary school students are enrolled in 42 schools in Zagreb, 91 in 30 schools in Split-Dalmatia county, 81 in schools in Lika-Senj county, 73 in 22 schools in Primorje-Gorski Kotar county and 67 in schools in Varaždin. County.

Speaking to Hina, Dražena Aračić, principal of a primary school in Korenica, Lika-Senj county, where 55 Ukrainian children have been enrolled, said that everything is being done so that they can integrate as well as possible. in curricular and extracurricular activities and feel welcome first and foremost.

She said they had been traumatized by the war and separated from their families. The Ministry of Education therefore approved the school’s request to hire a counsellor.

Goranka Štefančić, headmistress of a primary school in Varaždinske Toplice, Varaždin county with 20 Ukrainian pupils, said that they had assimilated very well and you could not see that they came from a war zone .

Teachers at the school took a free online Ukrainian course, she told Hina, adding that from March 16, Ukrainian students are fully included in regular classes and many donors provided them with the things they need for school.

Davor Juriša, principal of a primary school in Kraljevica, Primorje-Gorski Kotar county, which has nine Ukrainian pupils, said that when preparing for their arrival, the school consulted with representatives of the Red Cross and other institutions involved so that the integration can be as simple as possible.

Other students welcomed them very well, he told Hina.

The three principals stated that the main obstacle to the integration of Ukrainian pupils was the Croatian language. Aračić said it was a little easier for those who spoke English, but added that they learned Croatian quite quickly.

Štefanić said Croatian learning takes place every day for two hours at his school and the students progress quickly.

Due to the situation, the school is allowing students to use mobile phones during lessons so they can use translation apps to communicate, she added.

At the Kraljevica school, Ukrainian pupils learn Croatian twice a week.

In order to promote their integration, Ukrainian children are included in extracurricular activities, ranging from art workshops and learning other languages ​​to sports.

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