Those who intend to live permanently in Cyprus will have the task of choosing a school for their children or grandchildren. We have already mentioned the peculiarities of the educational process in English schools in Cyprus. However, on the island, there are also the official Russian schools. The Russian schools in Cyprus are in Nicosia — Secondary School at the Russian Embassy in the Republic of Cyprus, Limassol (3 schools) and 1 in Paphos. Russian schools, as a rule, are chosen by those who don’t plan to live in Cyprus for long and whose child will continue their education in Russian universities, or those who want their child to adapt to a new country while raising their level of foreign language knowledge.
Russian Embassy School in Nicosia
In Nicosia, the Russian school is usually attended by children whose parents work at the embassy or are contracted with Cyprus companies.
It’s important to note that the school at the Russian Embassy is the only state educational institution in Cyprus accredited by the Russian Ministry of Education. Accordingly, the high school students who pass the examinations (CSE) will get Russian certification. If a certificate is required for a child learning Russian in another school, then he/she must pass exams in coordination with the Embassy. Tuition at the Embassy school costs €150 per month, and there are discounts (30-50%) for children whose study is “excellent” or “good.”
Schools in Limassol and Paphos
The educational process in other Russian schools in Cyprus – Paphos and Limassol, is constructed using the “School of Russia” and “School of XXI Century” programmes, with emphasis on the in-depth study of English and Greek with native-speaking teachers. In primary schools, as a rule, the children have 4-6 English classes and 2-3 Greek lessons per week. Two additional classes are provided per week for each language, at a cost of €40 per month (per language).
The Ministry of Education in Cyprus licences the Russian schools which teach the children in their mother tongue. After graduation, they receive a certificate and sample Cypriot state certificate of the Russian Federation after attestation at the Russian Embassy in Cyprus. Training in Russian schools is from 8 am to 12/1:30. In elementary school, there are 5-6 lessons daily, and in grades 5-11 there are seven lessons per day. Class size is lower than in schools in Russia. For example, there are about 15-20 students in each class in primary school and around 10-15 in grades 5-11, but sometimes less as some high school students study in English schools and attendance to the Russian school is extra.
The academic year is split into trimesters and holidays coincide with the Russian. Schools also have introductory classes for children of ages 5-6. Throughout the year the students organise various events and concerts to mark the holidays (New Year, February, 23 and March, 8, May, 9). For example, one of the Russian Limassol schools has a tradition of celebrating New Year with a lottery and a concert, where both the children and parents participate for a fee of €15. The prizes range from a dinner for two at a restaurant, a weekend at the hotel, or part-payment of tuition fees.
The cost for studying in Russian schools in Limassol and Paphos is about €250 per month; additional classes are offered in a variety of areas (€60-€80 per month each) and extended-day groups. Working libraries and video libraries with Russian movies both for children and adults are also available at the schools.
Documents for enrolling in the Russian School in Cyprus
Students must have their cumulative file if they attend during the school year, plus report card or transcript of the Russian school certificate. When enrolling in grades 10-11 the student must provide a certificate of incomplete secondary education, medical certificate (which can be obtained from a paediatrician in Cyprus for €50) and a copy of their birth certificate.
What additional costs may be required while studying at the Russian school?
As a rule, parents take their children to school themselves, but if they are unable to do so the school can arrange transport to and from for a cost of around €140-€160, depending on distance, but only within the limits of Limassol or Paphos – children in remote villages cannot use this service. If necessary, the school provides the children with hot meals (breakfast and lunch) for about €100 per month. Snack bars are available in schools so students can purchase sandwiches (€2-€3), water, juices, etc.
Features of Russian schools in Cyprus
The peculiarity of Russian schools in Cyprus is their almost homely atmosphere. There is no need to make an appointment to see the teachers or director. Any problem can be solved quickly, and the attitude towards children and parents is extremely friendly. It’s easy then to notice a significant difference between the majority of Russian schools in Russia and their counterparts in Cyprus.
So, if you intend to continue your child’s education in Russian universities, or are not planning to stay in Cyprus for long then the Russian schools in Nicosia, Limassol and Paphos may be the best choice for your child.