A scandal about the Russian-speaking class is spiking in Mukachevo.
Mukachevo parents wrote an open letter to the head of the Transcarpathian Regional State Administration Hennadiy Moskal about the violation of their constitutional rights to free choice of language of education.
The reason is that they were unable to have their children enrolled to the "Russian" form of the school № 1. This year, changed have occurred there – first-graders will not be taught in Russian anymore.
Here is the full text of the parents appeal to the head of the Transcarpathian Regional State Administration Moskal:
"Dear Mr. Moskal!
Recently, there was an event that was hard to imagine with previous governors: you took part in the festival of Rusyn culture that is held annually in our city. By doing so, you showed respect for them. Moreover, you appealed to them to their native language. And before that, speaking at the Hungarian forum, you were addressing them in the language of Petofi.
We reasonably believe that you, like no other, will help to resolve that difficult situation which we have found ourselves in due to bureaucratic arbitrariness.
We, the parents of 25 children, were unable to have our sons and daughters enrolled to the school № 1 where they could learn in Russian. This school is the only one in the city where they teach in the language of Pushkin. But this year, unprecedented changes have occurred there – first-graders for the first time are denied the right to learn in Russian. That is, the parents were denied in the formation of Russian-speaking class, and this decision of the city department of education is absolutely unjustified and arbitrary. This happened for the first time in post-war history of the city!
August 11 this year, the Department of Education headed by T.V.Tiba received applications by 25 parents of children who wanted to learn in Russian. We still have these applications. But they "did not notice" them then. On August 17, we received a response signed by the Mayor Zoltan Lendyel: "there is no possibility to maintain an underfilled form."
But is a form of 25 students underfilled? All four first forms at the school №1 are made up of the same number of students. We have not received answers to these legitimate questions.
The city mayor, on every convenient occasion, boasts tolerant interethnic relations in the city, but the facts suggest otherwise. Specifically, the party "United Center", which owns a controlling stake in Mukachevo city council, ignores the educational needs of children while disregarding the Basic Law of the state.
The Constitution of Ukraine guarantees "free development, use and protection of Russian and other minority languages in Ukraine" (Article 10), promotes "the development of the ethnic, cultural, linguistic and religious identity of all indigenous peoples and national minorities of Ukraine" (Article 11).
We are not against the Ukrainian language, on the contrary, every child will study and know it under compulsory school course. But in everyday life, our families speak Russian, our children better learn the course material in this language, because they are used to it.
We expect from you, as the head of the regional executive power, a representative of the pro-presidential political force "Bloc of Petro Poroshenko "Solidarnist" to restore order in the educational field of Mukachevo. Without your help and support, it will never happen.
We expect from you to put an end to the iniquity, which now prevails in Mukachevo, and we will recall it only as a nightmare.
The letter is signed by parents of students of the school №1 named after Pushkin (three) and parents of first-graders from other schools (21).