Submission of Entries Successfully Completed in Moldova, Armenia – and Ukraine!
In all three countries the history competitions 2021/2022 produced very satisfying results. Armenia’s number of entries is remarkable for a first edition – but most heartening is the fact that even in war times the Ukrainian competition still received entries.
After the official entry deadlines closed in the three countries, the flurried counting of submitted entries started immediately. In Armenia the organisers received a total of 47 entries - a very remarkable number for a first competition edition - while in Moldova the project team was happy about 105 competition works created by 118 pupils.
Under normal circumstances, the Ukrainian project team might have been a little bit disappointed about “only” 65 entries delivered by a total of 282 youngsters and their 80 tutors. But with everything being anything but normal and in the light of two postponed closing dates due to the war, the team’s happiness and pride absolutely prevailed.
"Many of these works came to us after February 24. And this testifies to the incredible dedication of teachers and students to their work, their principles, and it cannot fail to impress," said Andrii Fert, project coordinator of DVV International Ukraine, on behalf of the competition organisers.
His colleague Petro Kendzor from the All-Ukrainian Association of History Teachers "NOVA DOBA" explained how the date of the submission influenced the content of the works and caused some challenges for the jury: “We received one part of the competition works by February 24, 2022, that is, before the Russian aggression against Ukraine. And another – after this date. The evaluation of the competition works is currently underway. It is difficult for experts to give them an objective assessment. There are several reasons. The authors sought to critically examine and present the real Soviet reality in the first case. In the second – the contestants had already seen Soviet-driven anti-human cruelty. They did not have time to comprehend the actual depth of Soviet totalitarianism fully.”
A map created by the organisers shows another remarkable fact: the competition entries dealing with the very current topic “Soviet Past: Rethinking History” came from almost every region of Ukraine:
“The map showing the geography of the submitted entries reflects the involvement of all regions of Ukraine. Traditionally, (there are) many works from the East of Ukraine. The dynamics of works confirm that the rethinking of the Soviet heritage is growing. This is an important factor in developing young people's critical thinking, the stability of democratic values, and the rejection of the totalitarian ‘Russkii Mir’.” (Russian World), Petro Kendzor summarises.
For Andrii Fert this graphic is causing ambivalent feelings:
”When you look at this map, you feel a mixture of sadness, fear for those who found themselves amidst the hell of war, and, at the same time, pride and admiration."
There is no doubt that the evaluation of entries will be more emotional than usual, and the professional jury in Ukraine – consisting of well-known historians, teachers, and journalists – will now start to identify the prize winners of 2021/2022.
Also in Moldova and Armenia the jury members are getting very busy now. At the same time, the preparations for the festive award ceremonies for the prize winners and all other participants are progressing – causing rising anticipation.
In Georgia the students still have some very few days left to finish their competition entries. Official closing date for the Georgian competition is 31 May.