Schools of Value Education 2019 both come from Võru

Yesterday, on the 9th of December, Centre for Ethics, University of Tartu (CEUT) awarded quality badges to schools who do exemplary work with values education. Prof. Margit Sutrop, the head of CEUT, gave the highest recognition, the School of Values Education 2019 award to Võru Gymnasium and Võru Kesklinna Kool.

Võru Kesklinna Kool was awarded for great leadership culture, valuing mental and physical health and creating a values-based school environment.

Sixten Sild, the deputy mayor of Võru said that Võru Kesklinna Kool is definitely worthy of their slogan “The best place to be learning in!” “People are very bright-eyed and motivated in this school and they are successful in everything they do,” said Sild. He added that this school values their traditions greatly and the alumni support the school actively.

The headmistress of Võru Kesklinna Kool, Kaare Lill was happy to receive such high award. “We have a beautifully renovated schoolhouse and now we can say that the work done inside it is renovated as well,” she added gleefully. Õnne Kronberg, a teacher in the school, added that CEUT’s recognition programme made their work more focused and systematic. “The School of Value Award will keep motivating us for years to come,” Kronberg said.

Võru Gymnasium got the School of Value Award for great overall school culture and open, friendly and co-operative school environment.

Annely Hindrikson, a teacher at the gymnasium, thanked her colleagues for great work. “Writing a self-analysis was a good input to our further development,” said Hindrikson. “We can now take everything we are good at and strive for even greater goals.”

School Network Department Chief Expert Anti Alasi from the Ministry of Education and Research said that Võru Gymnasium has had a very clear values orientation. “We are very happy that the greatness of this school got wider attention. The community and Ministry noticed their efforts long time ago,” he added.

Nele Punnar, the good school project manager at CEUT, said that in their feedback to the recognition programme, the schools say that the recognition programme helps them to focus their work and activities. “It is important that schools’ core values would become visible in their everyday lives and not only stay declared in various documents,” Punnar added.

The quality badges from the recognition programme “Good School as Values-based School” were given out at the 12th annual values education conference “Practicing shapes the character”. The Centre for Ethics, University of Tartu has supported and recognised values-based activities in kindergartens and schools since 2009. 92 schools and 113 kindergartens from different parts of Estonia have participated in the programme in 2009–2019.

The information about quality badges and their statutes can be found in Ethicsweb.

The conference and recognitions programme are funded by the National Programme “Values Development in Estonian Society 2009–2013” for the years 2015–2020, funded by the Ministry of Education and Research. The conference was supported by the Bristish Council in Estonia.