The Education Ministry will send an inspection team to the primary school on Beethovenova Street in Nitra. The reason is that they invited members of the paramilitary group, Slovenskí Branci (Slovak Levies) to perform demonstrations of fighting techniques and chemical protection, despite the fact that schools have been recommended not to do this.
Slovak Levies boasted about their visit to the school on social network saying, “Slovak Levies, free of charge and at their own expenses, organised the sporting and civil defence programme at the primary school in Nitra,” and they also published pictures, the SITA newswire reported.
The pupils were able to try shooting an air gun and throwing false grenades, as well as examine the military equipment and learn more about chemical protection and health science.
The Education Ministry said it would check into the event, in cooperation with the school inspectorate.
“If the inspection reveals any flaws linked with non-observance of the basic rules and objectives in education, in compliance with the Education Act, we will apply adequate measures,” the spokesperson of the ministry, Ivana Skokanová, told SITA.
The city of Nitra will not become further involved with the situation as it is now in the hands of the school inspectorate, reads its statement. The schools cooperate with various organisations and associations when organising didactic games and training and it is up to them to decide whom they choose, wrote Andrej Jančovič from Nitra’s municipal authority, as reported by SITA.
It is not the first time that a school has invited Slovak Levies. Back in 2015 the school inspectorate examined similar events in the villages of Ludanice and Presľany, both in the Topoľčany district. The schools’ headmasters allowed the paramilitary organisation to prepare lectures without asking for any identification, and they did not even evaluate the available information about the activities and character of this organisation, according to the inspectors. This resulted in an incompetent and unprofessional presentation of certain topics, they added.
The headmasters later realised they had been manipulated and regretted their decision, according to the results of the inspection. One of them even published a warning on the internet, recommending that other headmasters be very careful when organising similar events, SITA wrote.
Then education minister, Juraj Draxler also warned against spreading extremist attitudes in the education sector, with details being published on the ministry’s website. Meanwhile, chief school inspector Viera Kalmánová also called on teachers to be careful when accepting offers to carry out history and political lectures from organisations not active in education.
The headmaster of the school in Nitra told the Denník N daily, which was the first to report the incident, that he did not know about the warnings.