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PASCH Interview: Schools - Partners of the Future

On January 12th, a free informational online meeting "PASCH Initiative: Schools - Partners of the Future" took place for students and parents of the Scientific Lyceum of Information Technologies in Dnipro. This article will be written in the form of an interview, from which you will learn more about initiatives related to the German language. Additionally, we have a video from the meeting. Enjoy watching!

Alina Zakrevska, founder of Pauker Club, PASCH coordinator, and German language teacher, will be answering questions.

  • What is PASCH?

The "Schools: Partners of the Future" (PASCH) initiative connects over 2000 schools worldwide. These schools unite young people with an interest in Germany and learning the German language. The main goals of the initiative are to broaden the horizons of youth through access to language and education, and to create educational opportunities. PASCH works with the support of the Goethe-Institut, which oversees schools in various countries.

The initiative was launched in 2008 by the Federal Foreign Office of Germany. Coordination is carried out jointly with the Central Agency for Schools Abroad, the Goethe-Institut, the German Academic Exchange Service, and the Pedagogical Exchange Service of the Conference of Ministers of Education and Cultural Affairs.

  • What practical benefits do students of PASCH schools receive?

In fact, there are many benefits. Let's start with scholarships for international exams in German. If a young person learns a foreign language, even as a hobby, it is very important to occasionally confirm their level by taking an international exam. A language proficiency certificate may be required for participation in selection processes and competitions for scholarships, or when applying for internships, studies, or work in a German-speaking country. In any case, this will be an advantage in the future. The cost of such exams ranges from 50 euros for level A1 to 200-300 euros for higher levels. But PASCH school students receive financial compensation from scholarship funds and thus only pay 30 percent of the exam fee. Also, exams are often held at PASCH schools. Currently, due to the state of emergency, this is quite a limited option, but already the cost compensation is a significant plus.

  • Do students of PASCH schools have additional language learning opportunities?

Yes, indeed. A large number of competitions are held annually, in which students can participate, showcase their talents, and win scholarships to participate in German-language camps and workshops abroad or online. Typically, competition tasks are very interesting and simple – for example, to shoot a short video on a particular topic. Common topics include democracy, equality, the future, and natural sciences.

  • What exactly does the concept of a scholarship include?

A scholarship for participation in a workshop or camp covers all expenses, including accommodation, meals, training, cultural program, and travel. That is, it is a really large amount, entirely covered by the German side. Also, everything is fully organized. Feedback on participation in such camps is usually very positive. At the end of the camp, participants can take an international exam, which will be free for participants, which is also an advantage. Such a three-week camp can give a great boost to a young person in terms of language learning as well as motivation for further activities.

  • What are the chances of receiving such a scholarship?

Very high! The work must meet certain requirements (duration of the video, copyrights, German language proficiency, and the age of the participant), and accompanying forms must be correctly filled out.

This, by the way, can also be seen as an educational process – learning to work with one's own documents is valuable experience for a student.

When a decision is made to award a scholarship, the PASCH team will assist in the preparation of other documents for travel. Every year, 70-90 percent of the works of our students are rewarded with scholarships.

  • Are there any proposals from PASCH for graduates?

Graduating students are usually more interested in their future than in school activities. Such students should pay attention to the Bridge to Higher Education program in Germany and the scholarships offered by DAAD – the German Academic Exchange Service. I will tell you more about them in other articles and meetings, as this is an endless topic.

  • What are the advantages of PASCH for schools themselves?

Firstly, it's the status itself.

Such schools have international connections and partnerships, opening up more opportunities for their students.

Secondly, PASCH funds textbooks, additional literature for students and teachers. Thirdly, it's professional development for teachers and the opportunity for growth. This applies, by the way, not only to German language teachers. The initiative strongly encourages CLIL lessons. I also talk about this in a separate topic.

  • Thank you for such an informative interview. There is also an interview in another article with a student from the Lyceum, who will tell you how to make a project work effectively to win a scholarship! See you in our blog!

PASCH Initiative website
You can familiarize yourself with the initiative on the Goethe Institute website in Ukrainian