President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy together with his wife Olena met with teachers – winners of the Teacher of the Year 2019 competition and Global Teacher Prize Ukraine 2019 on the occasion of the Day of Educators of Ukraine.
“We respect your profession. I think it is one of the most important professions,” the Head of State emphasized during a meeting at the Office of the President of Ukraine.
Volodymyr Zelenskyy noted that both his grandmothers had been teachers and his father was an educator at university.
“We have always been proud of this profession. We want to congratulate you on this holiday,” the President said, addressing the educators.
First Lady Olena Zelenska noted that school education in Ukraine needed to be constantly improved to meet the challenges of the time.
“We are parents, so we are interested in making positive changes in school education. Our children study in a good school, and we would like all teachers to feel as happy as at this school,” Olena Zelenska said.
According to the President’s wife, it is important for every child to find a teacher for life – a person who can teach life principles. “If you have a Teacher with a capital T, he will be with you all his life. You always remember him. If such a person provides moral support, you will go your way all your life,” Olena Zelenska said.
Zoya Lytvyn, organizer of the Global Teacher Prize Ukraine, conveyed greetings to the President from his physics teacher. In response, Volodymyr Zelenskyy recalled that his physics teacher could cause the interest of students in the subject with original methods of teaching.
Answering the questions of the educators what skills and qualities acquired at school helped him on his way to the post of President, Volodymyr Zelenskyy said that first of all it was communication skills, humanity, willingness to withstand justice, the ability to sort out a difficult situation. Olena Zelenska added that the ability to defend one’s own point of view was also of great importance.
During the meeting, teachers also touched upon the problems of rural schools, in particular the need to ensure equal opportunities and learning conditions for children from urban areas and pupils living in the village. Minister of Education and Science of Ukraine Hanna Novosad noted that it was planned to increase funding for hub schools and schools in rural areas in the state budget for the next year.
The President also stressed the importance of connecting schools, particularly in villages, to the Internet. Volodymyr Zelenskyy offered to develop an appropriate program to attract budgetary funds.
At the end of the meeting, the Head of State presented gifts to the educators.