Monday, October 25, 2021

The USAID Interethnic Integration in Education Project Ended

Over 1000 teachers, students, parents, representatives of the educational institutions, civil society organisations, USAID and EUCOM celebrated the joint achievements of the five-year USAID Interethnic Integration in Education Project at the Close-Out Event which was held on March, 15 in Skopje. Guzva


The achievement and the maintenance of the interethnic integration in education is a complex and long-term process. In view of this fact, during the previous years, the Project successfully involved the main stakeholders in all activities, which stakeholders were working on a mission for encouraging the creativity, opening possibilities for new knowledge and learning, opening new horizons and views, mutual introduction and understanding, respecting the differences, all for the purposes of creating new shared values and building a joint future.


One of the key achievements of the project is that now all primary and secondary schools in Macedonia are involved in the process. Most of the municipalities, parents’ councils and local communities supported and will continue to support the activities for integration at community level. With this Project, approximately 400 partnerships have been established between the schools through which an interaction was established between the teachers and the students from the schools with different languages of instruction. More than 5600 students took part in ethnically mixed creative workshops, debate clubs and curriculum and extracurricular activities. Through the Office of Defence Cooperation (ODC), EUCOM, 63 schools have been renovated, thus providing a modern and safe learning environment for over 46000 students.



In his speech, the IIEP Chief of Party, Mr. Nebojsa Mojsoski, stated that although at the beginning of the project and, even today, there are people who are sceptical about the aim of the project, nevertheless this project is a very successful and noble. “However, what we did is not enough. The Project is considered successful when it turns into a process and in order for the process to be successful it requires the responsibility of all of us as individuals, and not only of the municipalities, the schools and the institutions”, added Mr. Mojsoski.


The Minister of Education and Science, Mr. Pistar Lutfiu, in his speech emphasized the key role of the educational reforms that were implemented by the Ministry and expressed his satisfaction with the USAID and EUCOM partnership. “I wish you many further successes and I invite you to continue to educate our young citizens in the spirit of multiculturalism and respecting the differences”, stated Mr. Lutfiu.


The USAID Mission Director, Mr. James Stein, stated that “Through these programmes the students learn they we are all the same and that respecting the ethnical differences and interethnic cooperation is the right path for Macedonia to succeed in the future. At the end, although the project is formally ending, he encouraged the attendees to continue to exert strong efforts that will build upon the achieved results. “I witnessed many of your activities in the past several years and I’m strongly convinced that you will continue to work on diminishing the barriers that exits among the people and the communities”, added Stein.