For the sixth year in row new students have just started their adventure at the School of Education of Polish-American Freedom Foundation and University of Warsaw. That post-graduate course starts with a few-day-long Summer School away session not only allowing the students to integrate but also introducing them to the intensive rhythm of classes. They will get to know their curriculum and attend first psychological and didactic workshops. In September they will start their academic classes and intensive internships at schools under the supervision of well qualified mentors.
Speaking at the ceremony of opening the new academic year, School of Education Director Prof. Jolanta Sujecka-Zając pointed to the fact that we are bombarded every day with the news showing how hard is the job of a teacher. “I want to caution you – don’t take that language and views as your own. Don’t allow yourselves to see school only in the context of results, discipline, grades, exams, levels and catching up. Thinking that way you will forget about children. We want to join hands with you and change that attitude. We will (…) speak about people as community, pay attention to their objectives which need to be followed, ” Prof. Jolanta Sujecka-Zając said.
Vice-Rector for Students at University of Warsaw Prof. Sławomir Żółtek congratulated the new students of the School of Education in his letter. “Our university attaches great importance to educating future teachers (…). It’s a big challenge and I am happy you are ones of those who decided to take it up. I wish you a lot of perseverance and success. I am convinced that looked after by the School of Education staff each of you will find your answers to the question of how to become a good and effective teacher who rather supports than helps, discusses than declaims, listens to than questions. That’s what today’s education is in great need of,” he wrote.
Foundation Program Director Marianna Hajdukiewicz emphasized that the School of Education is a unique initiative. “That program is based on many-year experience of the Foundation in the area of education. Our idea was to support schools, teachers and future teachers in improving the quality of teaching children and young people. We wanted to accompany teachers from the very beginning of their careers, at each stage of their professional development. The School of Education is not meant to be a big scale, mass program. We have a very strong impact on reflective analysis, we are a laboratory that allows to look at school and teaching thoroughly,” Marianna Hajdukiewicz added.
The PAFF and UW School of Education runs the only in Poland free full-time postgraduate course for future teachers of Polish, history and social studies, biology and mathematics. Additionally students are offered a scholarship and free accommodation at a residence hall in Warsaw.