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1.3K Ukrainian Schools Destroyed in Russian Invasion – UNICEF

A bombed-out school in the northern Ukrainian city of Chernihiv. UNICEF

Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine has led to the destruction of more than 1,300 Ukrainian schools over the past 18 months, disrupting education for millions of children in the war-torn country, according to UNICEF, the United Nations children’s agency.

“More than 1,300 schools have been totally destroyed [in Ukraine’s government-controlled regions],” said Regina De Dominicis, UNICEF Regional Director for Europe and Central Asia.

Many other schools have been too damaged to reopen for the new school year, Dominicis added.

She warned that 6.7 million Ukrainian children ages 3-18 were struggling to learn as a result of the war.

“Inside Ukraine, attacks on schools have continued unabated, leaving children deeply distressed and without safe spaces to learn,” Dominicis said. 

“Not only has this left Ukraine’s children struggling to progress in their education, but they are also struggling to retain what they learned when their schools were fully functioning.”

UNICEF said survey data showed around half of Ukraine’s teachers reporting worse Ukrainian language, mathematics and foreign language abilities among their students.

Ukraine’s enrollment data showed that only one-third of children in primary and secondary schools were being taught in person, according to UNICEF. Another one-third have gone fully online and one-third adopted a hybrid system of instruction.

More than half of the children who have fled Ukraine to seven other countries are not enrolled in their national education due to either language barriers, difficulties with access to education or overstretched systems, UNICEF said.

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