Education 14:00 31/08/2018 Armenia

More Armenian rural schools that will welcome few or no first graders on 1 Sept revealed continues revealing those schools in Armenia’s rural communities that will not admit first-grade students in this academic year. 

The majority of such schools are located in Armenia’s Syunik, Aragatsotn, Vayots Dzor and Lori regions.

A total of 10 schools in Syunik failed to welcome first graders last year.

Only three girls from the same family – third, sixth and seventh graders – are attending school in Arevis community of the region, the school headmistress, Rita Grigoryan told

“We lack a first class this year as well. Overall, we had five students, two of them moved to Karashen school, with three sisters left,” she detailed, adding the school employs only three teachers.

The school of the border village was built in 1948. The principal says it needs a reconstruction, but has no idea about the future of the school. 

Grigoryan says the school had the utmost number of students in 2002, when they stood at 21.

The school of Syunik’s Shikahogh community, that had no first graders last year, will admit two students this year. School principal Arevik Hakobyan is optimistic and says that the picture in the village is changing for the better. “The school has a total of 18 children, but there was a time it had fewer students,” she said, linking it with the increased birth rates in the village.

The village of Norashenik in the same region has lacked first grades for a long time. Principal David Tumanyan told us the school has only 14 students who are studying at higher classes and will soon graduate. “The school and village have no future,” he says.  

Another school in the village of Kachachkut in Lori, marked by a limited number of students, will admit 4 first graders on 1 September. School headmistress Anahit Petrosyan told us the institution has equal number of first grade students last year. “We have overall 33 schoolchildren at the moment. The reason behind the decline is the same as in other villages – social issues and unemployment,” he added.  

The principal of Sers village in Vayots Dzor region told that they have only 8 students and are preparing to welcome only one first grader this year.

The picture is quite different in Berkaber village of Tavush region, with the number of school students growing year on year.

“We have six first graders this year instead of last year’s one. Currently, the school has 46 students, while they numbered 34 five years ago,” Gayane Khudaverdyan, the principal of the school said, agreeing it with the investments made in the village, as well as the difficulties in integrating in foreign countries

As reported earlier, the Ministry of Education and Science has promised to unveil the exact number of first graders in the country after 5 September. 

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