The EFA 2000 Assessment: Country Reports Georgia

Figure 10 . Distribution of teachers according to their experience

in the second shift at pre-school institutions, absence of vacancies has resulted in reduction of the number of young teachers. So, for example, if in 1995 among kindergarten teachers the teachers having less than 5 years experience were of 15 %, today their number is only 8 % (see Table 10, Figure 10).

Figure shows that the percentage of young teachers engaged in countryside is higher than in cities. Thus, for example, in Mtskheta-Mtianeti the percentage of young teachers having 5 years working experience is equal to 20.16%. Corresponding figure for cities is equal to 4.21% (Table 10). Since 1997 the number of the young teachers a little bit has increased (7%), in 1998 it has grown on 1%. As it can be seen the process of inflow of the young staff began (Table 10).

Table 108 Distribution of teachers according to their experience

 Num-ber of Tea-cher s According to their experience Num-ber of Tea-cher s according to their experience < 5 5-10 11-15 >15 < 5 5-10 11-15 >15 1995 1998 Georgia 10491 14.62 24.38 25.06 35.95 5795 8.28 15.08 25.35 51.29 Tbilisi city 2804 14.80 26.00 25.18 34.02 1627 8.97 18.50 29.81 42.72 Abkhazeti 45 22.22 17.78 28.89 31.11 Adjara 444 22.30 23.20 13.29 41.44 238 7.98 11.76 24.37 55.88 Guria 354 5.37 18.93 27.97 47.74 134 5.22 6.72 26.12 61.94 Imereti 1810 14.97 25.36 23.48 36.19 878 6.26 13.78 21.41 58.54 Khakheti 1489 9.20 20.42 28.34 42.04 785 4.71 5.99 18.34 70.96 Mtskheta-Mtianeti 351 18.52 22.51 27.35 31.62 224 13.39 13.84 30.36 42.41 Ratca-Lechumi -KS 201 22.39 24.38 29.85 23.38 124 8.06 27.42 28.23 36.29 Samegrelo & ZS 546 15.57 28.57 25.64 30.22 479 10.02 16.70 28.39 44.89 Samtskhe-Javakheti 320 14.69 28.75 25.63 30.94 175 6.86 12.57 22.29 58.29 Kvemo Kartli 964 18.05 27.80 20.33 33.82 610 12.46 21.80 26.07 39.67 Shida Kartli 591 13.54 21.15 29.10 36.21 324 3.70 13.58 22.22 60.49 Urban Georgia 7307 14.77 24.29 24.13 36.83 4094 8.26 16.22 26.38 49.15 Tbilisi city 2804 14.80 26.00 25.18 34.02 1627 8.97 18.50 29.81 42.72 Abkhazeti 0 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 38 15.79 18.42 34.21 31.58 Adjara 414 22.46 22.95 13.77 41.06 233 7.73 11.59 24.46 56.22 Guria 145 6.21 14.48 27.59 51.72 67 1.49 4.48 22.39 71.64 Imereti 1339 14.71 24.79 22.18 38.31 620 5.48 14.68 21.29 58.55 Khakheti 481 8.11 15.18 30.35 46.36 248 4.03 5.24 14.92 75.81 Mtskheta-Mtianeti 184 13.59 21.74 25.54 39.13 95 4.21 12.63 30.53 52.63 Ratca-Lechumi -KS 85 17.65 23.53 30.59 28.24 57 3.51 29.82 35.09 31.58 Samegrelo & ZS 372 16.67 29.84 21.51 31.99 295 12.54 21.02 27.80 38.64 Samtskhe-Javakheti 230 10.00 31.30 24.78 33.91 127 5.51 11.81 22.83 59.84 Kvemo Kartli 651 17.67 27.34 20.89 34.10 419 14.56 20.05 26.97 38.42 Shida Kartli 304 11.18 16.45 26.64 45.72 157 0.64 12.74 24.84 61.78 Rural Georgia 3184 14.29 24.59 27.20 33.92 1701 8.35 12.35 22.87 56.44 Abkhazeti 7 57.14 14.29 0.00 28.57 Adjara 30 20.00 26.67 6.67 46.67 5 20.00 20.00 20.00 40.00 Guria 209 4.78 22.01 28.23 44.98 67 8.96 8.96 29.85 52.24 Imereti 471 15.71 26.96 27.18 30.15 258 8.14 11.63 21.71 58.53 Khakheti 1008 9.72 22.92 27.38 39.98 537 5.03 6.33 19.93 68.72 Mtskheta-Mtianeti 167 23.95 23.35 29.34 23.35 129 20.16 14.73 30.23 34.88 Ratca-Lechumi -KS 116 25.86 25.00 29.31 19.83 67 11.94 25.37 22.39 40.30 Samegrelo & ZS 174 13.22 25.86 34.48 26.44 184 5.98 9.78 29.35 54.89 Samtskhe-Javakheti 90 26.67 22.22 27.78 23.33 48 10.42 14.58 20.83 54.17 Kvemo Kartli 313 18.85 28.75 19.17 33.23 191 7.85 25.65 24.08 42.41 Shida Kartli 287 16.03 26.13 31.71 26.13 167 6.59 14.37 19.76 59.28

Figure shows that the percentage of young teachers engaged in countryside is higher than in cities. Thus, for example, in Mtskheta-Mtianeti the percentage of young teachers having 5 years working experience is equal to 20.16%. Corresponding figure for cities is equal to 4.21% (Table 10). Since 1997 the number of young teachers a little bit has increased (7%), in 1998 it has grown on 1%. As it can be seen the process of inflow of the young staff began .

According to the order 469, 30 September 1997, issued by the Ministry of Education, pre-school institutions were passed to partial self-financing. In accordance with mentioned decree some changes were introduced into a list of staff. In particular, music teachers, as well as second shift teachers and cook assistants must be paid according to the self-financing principles.

The youth has lost interest to profession of the tutor at kindergartens. The profession is not already prestigious. The reduction of the number of entrants in pedagogical high education institutions exposes this tendency. For example, in 1980 the number of annual entrants in pedagogical colleges of Georgia varied from 300 to 330, in 1997-1998 their number has decreased to 60. Similar situation is at the Tbilisi Sulkhan-Saba Orbeliani Pedagogical University where 100-120 students studied annually. In 1997 their number has decreased to 48, and in 1998 has constituted only 27.

Due to all told above, there exists a problem of changing the attitude and producing new policy with respect to the system of education including pre-school education. The state program of reforms in the education system was developed. In this program pre-school education is considered as well. Grants received from the World Bank were also applied to pre-school education. Money received from the Soros fund was used for improvement of material and technical base of 53 groups at 18 pre-school institutions and partially transferred to rise in pay of teachers. By the state program of reform of the education system the following objectives are stipulated: to entrust to a management of pre-school institutions, to develop the programs and methodological instructions for management of pre-school institutions and kindergartens in new economic conditions. Grants were allocated for this purposes. So, despite of existing difficulties in the country the positive shifts are noted. In particular, some measures have been attempted in order to provide pre-school institutions by the methodological instructions.

According to purposes of transition from the unified adaptive–disciplinary model to a person-oriented model, the group of authors developed the program of education for the pre-school age children. The model concentrates its attention on processes of guiding of child’s upbringing and development depending on the forms of his behaviour (through games, fine arts, music etc). Issues of spiritual development of the child, in particular religious, moral and aesthetic education with the help of Georgian folklore are considered there. Issues of education in national and patriotic traditions are also stipulated in the model.

Preparatory program for pre-school children arranged in the following subjects: environment, nature, language and mathematics. Textbooks in Georgian language for children of national minorities have been published.

"Psychology of the Child" has been published, which helps the teachers and parents to conduct the psychological education of children. "Attention, the Child" has also been published which is intended for assessing children abilities and for development of correction measures. A number of periodical publications were issued: "Pre-school and primary education", "Methodisti", and "Tserodena". The teacher training and retraining seminars start functioning. Pedagogical conferences and seminars were organised and they excite large interest among the teachers of kindergartens.

These measures help pre-school institutions to improve their activity and to prepare children to school. One of the basic tasks of a pre-school institution is to establish strong link with schools taking into account requests that a school presents to a child. The assessments carried out by school teachers shows that children from kindergartens are better prepared skills and better developed for primary school demands than those brought up at home.

In 1990-1991 the half of entrants in the first grade of primary schools was from kindergartens. Table 15 shows the rate of entrants having passed kindergartens as a percentage of population at the official primary school entrance age.

The different types of pre-school education institutions are created in Georgia over the last years:

• Public (trade, mixed and author) institutions
• Private (co-operative, public, family type) institutions
• Author (private) institutions.

The democratic style of management of the pre-school education system has been gradually implemented involving psychologists, artists, foreign language teachers, dancers etc. The pre-school institutions have to be guided by the both state standards and other standards of higher level. In some pre-school establishments the alternative programs are applied. In one of Tbilisi pre-school institutions two groups function under the Waldorf program, in two others children are trained under the special environmental program.

As mentioned above, "Step by Step" program of the Open Society Georgian Foundation has been implemented in some urban pre-schools. The program has functioned for a year but has already become popular. There is a request from the pre-school institutions for such kind of programs.

The UNICEF greatly assists the education system of Georgia. The Government of Georgia together with the UNICEF have started a new development program for 2001-2005 years. The state and non-state, international organisations and media participate in the program. The objective of the above program is to protect the Children rights and to give the children the possibility to develop mental and physical abilities.

Primary Education

Primary education in Georgia was the first lower stage of the Soviet education system and it was of 4 years duration (grades 1-4). These classes functioned as a part of secondary or incomplete secondary schools or as independent educational institutions. Before 1944 eight years old children are admitted into the first grade and after 1944 – seven years old children. At the end of the 1960s the last grade 4 was separated from the primary school and was added to the stage of grade 5-10. Thus, a primary school became of three years duration. In the 1970s preparatory classes for six years old children was opened at schools in Georgia. In 1984 the preparatory classes had been changed into the classes of grade 1 and, thus, 11 years study became the complete cycle of a secondary school (instead of 10 years). The primary school once again became a four years study school, but starting age changed and 6 years old children were admitted into a primary school.

In 1990 primary the number of classes in Georgia meet education needs of the relevant age-group population. Study was free, universal and illiteracy did not exit. In the first half of the 1990s the primary education system had shared all misfortunes the whole Georgian education system had experienced. Unstable political situation, the civil war, collapse of the Georgian economy, and hard social conditions destroyed school system on all levels. Part of school buildings was destroyed during the civil war and after the dramatic earthquake in 1991. Displaced families occupied many of them. The government had no financial resources to build new school-buildings or even to repair existing schools. The number of pupils did really diminish due mainly to emigration, but significantly decreased capacitance of school-buildings could not satisfy existing requirements. Many schools began to work in two or three shifts. For example, hundreds of pupils studied in day or evening shifts in 1995. The same situation continues to-day.

The dynamics of changing the number of school buildings in 1990-1998 is drawn in Figure 11. The curves show that the situation is critical. In 1990-1995 Georgia lost 122 primary school buildings, 48 basic schools, and 284 secondary schools. Therefore, the total lost was 460 school buildings. The figure shows that in last years the situation is stabilizing, but the improvement is not considerable.