Enlightenment Minister speaks about curriculum in upcoming school year


The state language is a priority. From now on, school students who study in Kazakh will start learning Russian from the second grade. This change will not apply to first-graders who chose the Russian language of study. As before, they will learn two languages simultaneously. According to the new rules, school students in Kazakhstan will begin to study English in the third grade. The changes to the curriculum are anticipated to be introduced in the upcoming academic year.

“Based on the results of research and analysis, we concluded that it is difficult for a first-grade school student to learn three languages simultaneously. Children must first be able to read and write in their native language,” said Kazakh Minister of Enlightenment Askhat Aimagambetov.

He informed that the subjects of craft education and visual arts were added to the first-grade curriculum. Also, children will have the opportunity to study chess in schools due to additional electives. New rules were introduced for hiring teachers as well. As the minister explained, university graduates will have to undergo certification before applying for a job.

“A new procedure for hiring teaching staff is being implemented. Now, teachers have to compete based on measurable criteria such as education, pedagogical seniority, qualification category and professional achievements,” Aimagambetov stated.

He also explained why the academic year for Kazakh schoolchildren will be extended until May 31. Offloading more than 3.5 million students is one of the main reasons. This change will provide an additional 36 days off for 1.5 million children and 150,000 teachers. About 300,000 children from 100 schools will have the opportunity to study in the second shift, not in the third, the minister added.