SECONDARY SCHOOL NO. 8 IN BIALYSTOK
WELCOME TO OUR SCHOOL
Our school is an academic co-educational high school in the Polish educational system. It is called ‘liceum’ in Polish and it is attended by students aged from 16 to 19. In Poland, ‘A General Liceum’ is for students who plan to further their academic education (i.e. attend university). Our school has special atmosphere which has been created by our headmasters, teachers and by our talented students themselves. Our students prepare here to take part in many different competitions and they often succeed. Ever year all our pupils successfully pass their A-levels and our graduates keep in touch with the school.
Secondary School No. 8 in Bialystok is named after one of the greatest Polish kings – Kazimierz the Great. It was founded in September 1991 and it is one of the biggest post-gymnasium schools in our city with about 810 students and over 60 teachers. The school itself is a two–storey building with well-equipped classrooms and with two computer rooms. There is a library with over 15,000 books, 2 gyms, three sports fields, a small snack shop, a nurse’s office, a driving school for students and a xerox place. Next to school there is a boarding house for 120 students with a canteen for all students, teachers and administrative personnel.
POLISH EDUCATIONAL SYSTEM IN SECONDARY SCHOOLS
All students of ‘liceum’ need to cover a basic syllabus with subjects like: Maths, Physics, Biology, Chemistry, Polish Literature, Geography, History, Current Affairs, Information Technology, 2 Foreign Languages (English, German, French or Russian), Religion and Physical Education. Each student chooses 3 subjects of the above which are covered on the extended level (from 3 up to 7 lessons per week of the chosen subjects).
After three years of studying all students take a final exam called ‘Matura’ or ‘Maturity Exam’ (the Secondary School Leaving Examination - a rough equivalent of British A-levels). This exam is taken in: Polish Language and Literature (a written and oral part), a chosen Foreign Language (a written and oral part), Maths (a written test) and one subject of student’s choice on the extended level (a written test) – minimum 6 exams altogether. Thecondition for passing these exams is to get 30% of all points. About 100 days before ‘the Matura Exam’ the traditional ‘ Studniówka’ (a prom ball) is organized.
HOW EXTENSIONS WORK?
Each age group is divided into 8 different grades. There is a symbolic letter attached to each grade starting form letter A finishing on H. In each grade there are at least 3 extended subjects. Students choose their grade before they start attending school according to their interests, talents or future plans. Here is a list of grades and extensions in them:
A – History, Polish Language and Literature, Current Affairs, Law English
B – Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Latin in Medicine
C – Maths, Geography, English, Principles of Entrepreneurship
D – Maths, Physics, IT
E – History, Current Affairs, English, Rhetoric
F – Biology, Geography, Chemistry, Nature of the Podlaskie Region
G – Biology, Chemistry, English, Physics in Medicine
H – Maths, Geography, IT, Computer Graphic
WHAT BESIDES CLASSES?
Extracurricular activities offered at our school mainly consist of a wide range of sports activities such as: football, basketball, volleyball, handball, futsal, ice-skating or chess. We also have many clubs, for example: Student Council, a Film Club, a Prom Committee, a Shooting Club and many more.
Secondary School No. 8 in Bialystok organizes different competitions, for example: ‘Physics in Photography’, ‘Continents of the World’ or ‘ 100 Questions about the British Isles’. We are especially proud of the national history competition called: ‘Poland under the Piasts’ which is organized together with the Bialystok University. Students all over Poland come to our school to present their knowledge of the reign of king Kazimierz The Great and other Piast kings. The greatest achievement of our school, however, is the fact that our students carry out historical research ofthe local area, collect interviews and later publish their research in a form of a book titled: ‘Podlaskie Losy’ (‘ The fate of Podlasie Region’). These books describe the unknown history of our region and help in discovering the past of our country.