EU funds help: Attractive classrooms improve learning
20. 11. 2020
Old equipment was replaced by modern aids, outdoor spaces were beautified by greenery. The grammar school in Hejčín, a city part of Olomouc, has undergone the coveted reconstruction thanks to European Union funds.
Grammar School Hejčín in Olomouc has become more attractive for current and future students since the end of last year. Thanks to a subsidy from European funds, the interior of the old building was transformed into one of the most modern schools in the Olomouc region. The renovated classrooms include those for geography, mathematics, biology or foreign languages, as well as laboratories and teacher offices. "We also used the money to build lifts. Our school has thus become completely barrier-free," said Karel Goš, the headteacher of the Hejčín grammar school. Persons with a reduced walking ability and wheelchair users can now study here, which was not possible before.
THEORY IS SUPPLEMENTED WITH PRACTICE
Repairs worth 38 million Czech crowns began in mid-June 2018. The construction workers managed to do most of the work during the summer holidays, the rest was completed during the autumn. Although the students and teachers had to adapt to the reconstruction for several weeks, no one minded. Everyone was looking forward to taking full advantage of the modernized environment.
Lovers of chemical and physical experiments in particular will now come into their own. "Students can test their theoretical knowledge in practice, which is always a huge advantage and the best option for memorizing the study material," said Goš. According to him, the experience gained in classrooms with modern equipment helps grammar school leavers who decide to continue their studies at university, even abroad, and increases the chances for their employment many times over.
New classrooms and laboratories are the busiest rooms at the school. Interactive whiteboards, multifunction printers, microscopes, computers, school desks with drawers, bookcases full of textbooks and teaching aids, as well as a projector, speakers for better sound or a refrigerator in each staffroom. These are only some of the novelties that can be found inside the school since the end of last year.
The project "Modernization of classrooms, equipment and internal connectivity of the school" under the Integrated Regional Operational Programme did not only concern the interior of the grammar school buildings. Changes took place throughout the campus, including outdoor areas. The access to the buildings was made more pleasant by new paving, the orchard and the adjacent park were improved. "We really longed for upgrading the surroundings of building C on Dolní Hejčínská street, but we lacked the money to do so.
We used the subsidies, for example, for planting new woody plants and other greenery. Thanks to the landscaping, teaching can also take place in the outdoor area of the school," Karel Goš explained. And while on warm days the sunshine will lure students outside, in a colder period their stay inside the building will be made more pleasant by a quality wi-fi network. This will definitely be useful for teaching all subjects, especially information technology, or in various after-school clubs. The transformation of the school into an attractive and modern educational institution took less than six months.
Although the costly works affected the first quarter of the new school year, the result is worth it. "I would like to express my great appreciation and admiration to all who took part in it," added the headteacher of Grammar School Hejčín. In addition to subsidies from the European funds, the Olomouc Region also contributed to the reconstruction.
The modernization of the school did not end there, it will continue this year as well.
The sports complex will soon be refurbished, a school club will be created for students, and the currently unsuitable computer science classrooms will be turned into quality learning spaces during the summer holidays.
There are also plans to build a specialised history classroom. The prestigious Olomouc grammar school has been very popular for years and is one of the best schools of this type in the Czech Republic. Its managers believe that any such improvement is a step forward.
"I dare say that few schools can offer electives to students in the last-but-one and the last year of school in mathematics, chemistry, biology, physics, history and geography in both Czech and English. This opens the door for our school-leavers to study abroad,“ headteacher Goš pointed out the high quality of Hejčín grammar school in Olomouc, including its English section.
"Students can test their theoretical knowledge in practice, which is always a huge advantage," says the headteacher of the grammar school, Karel Goš.
Photo: František Berger