Scientists appeal to Poroshenko: school program in Physics threatens the country development

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The Ministry of Education offered such “Physics and Astronomy” program for grades 10-11 that would make it impossible to study these academic disciplines in a proper way, Ukrainian scientists say. According to scientists, this will result in a situation where qualification, received by future experts, will be worse. “And this is threatening the prospect of high-tech development of Ukraine and its national security.” – scientists said and asked the President to stop the changes in education.

Open letter to Petro Poroshenko was signed by First Vice-President of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine Anton Naumovets, by Academician-Secretary of the Department of Physics and Astronomy of the NAS of Ukraine Vadym Loktev and by other scientists and teachers. We publish their appeal here:

to the President of Ukraine P.O.Poroshenko
to the Prime Minister of Ukraine V.B.Groysman
to the Chairman of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine A.V.Parubiy
Copies:
to the Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine O.V.Turchynov
to the Minister of Education and Science of Ukraine L.M.Hrynevych
to the Acting Head of the Verkhovna Rada Committee for Science and Education O.V.Spivakovsky
to the Director of the National Institute for Strategic Studies V.P.Gorbulin

Dear Petro Oleksiiovych!
Dear Volodymyr Borysovych!
Dear Andriy Volodymyrovych!

We hereby appeal to you as to the highest leaders of our country with regard to the very important, in our opinion, issue – content of the draft program in academic discipline “Physics and Astronomy” for grades 10-11, which was recently proposed by the Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine. This draft is completely unacceptable, which is clear for every employed teacher and for every expert in Physics as well. In fact, it does not bring out academic discipline, but replaces the basic education of secondary school graduates by “general ideas”, unsystematically torn from the integral physical picture of the world, as the basic for the natural knowledge and the scientific view of the world.
Please note that, unfortunately, upon the last “return” from 12-year to 11-year educational period, the current course of Physics for grades 10-11 turned out to be too overloaded. What is being offered nowadays is to add the Astronomical component to the Physics. Such change could only be welcomed if it is accompanied by the increase of educational time. But only 2 hours a week are dedicated to the entire course. Under such circumstances mechanical connection of Astronomy to Physics will just complicate the study of both academic disciplines. As a result, proper study of Physics is getting virtually impossible not just at the level of standard (this has already been done before), but at the field-oriented level too.
If someone is deliberately aiming at undermining of naturalistic educational system in our country, then we are not sure whether there is the better way to do this, except as to implement such program.
And there’s more: proposed program shall become the ground for the external independent testing in Physics, which will inevitably slash its professional level. The latter, in its turn, will lead to the drop in the quality of knowledge of prospective students, entering the higher educational institutions to the specialties of naturalistic and engineering-technical direction and will result in the qualifications lowering of such experts. And this is threatening the prospect of high-tech development of Ukraine and its national security.
At the same time, we are being told that the needs of the above specialties of higher educational institutions will be covered at the expense of field-oriented schools. However, as of today the number of schools of the relevant profile is ten times less than the demand. And destruction of existing training system of pupils in Physics to the actual creation of sufficient number of field-oriented schools (which pursuant to the “New School” project, developed with the participation of the Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine, scheduled for 2023-2025) will inevitably lead to the above-mentioned threatening consequences.
We are sure that such “reformation” of content of physical education in grades 10-11 shall be stopped. We shall return to the serious professional discussion of new program – especially now, when the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine started its work on the new Law on Education.

First Vice-President of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine,
Laureate of the State Prizes of Ukraine and the USSR, academician of the NAS of Ukraine,
Honored Worker of Science and Technology of Ukraine, Doctor in Physics and Mathematics, Professor
A.G.Naumovets

Academician-Secretary of the Department of Physics and Astronomy of the NAS of Ukraine,
Laureate of the State Prizes of Ukraine, academician of the NAS of Ukraine,
Honored Worker of Science and Technology of Ukraine, Doctor in Physics and Mathematics, Professor
V.M.Loktev

President of the Ukrainian Astronomical Association
Laureate of the State Prizes of Ukraine and the USSR, academician of the NAS of Ukraine,
Honored Worker of Science and Technology of Ukraine, Doctor in Physics and Mathematics, Professor
Ya.S.Yatskiv

President of the Ukrainian Physical Society,
Honored Worker of Science and Technology of Ukraine, Doctor in Physics and Mathematics, Professor
I.O.Anisimov

Teacher of Physics at Natural and Scientific Lyceum No. 145 of Kyiv city,
Honored Teacher of Ukraine
O.G.Rozevain

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