On 23rd June, the British International School Ukraine hosted another important online event to sum up the Academic Year 2021-2022, which was extremely challenging for the whole BISU community that is now placed all over the world
We held the Ukrainian Secondary Education Certificate Award ceremony featuring Year 10 and Year 12 students, their family members, honoured guests and BISU Ukrainian Curriculum teachers.
Though official, this long-awaited get-together conveyed a friendly, cosy atmosphere that encouraged the attendees and warmed up their hearts.
The ceremony began with a minute’s silence to honour the memory of all those who have lost their lives as a result of the armed aggression of the Russian Federation.
Traditionally, the BISU Chair, Mrs Olga Zastavna, was the first speaker to address the attendees: “Today we are presenting certificates of basic secondary and complete general secondary education to 10 Year and 12 Year students. I wish them luck and success in all their future endeavours, as well as happiness and God’s blessing. I am very proud of every single staff member of the British International School Ukraine. Your great work, professional skills, loyalty and commitment made this important event happen. I am also grateful to parents for their trust in BISU, and I do hope that we exceeded their expectations.”
The BISU Principal David Cole said, “Reaching this point is truly remarkable in such circumstances. It is testament to the strength, resolve and ‘can do’ attitude which characterises Ukraine and the BISU community. As I also said to our international Year 13 students, whilst accepting the war has had a great impact upon you, do not let it define you. You must not settle for your second best because of what you have experienced but strive hard to do well despite what you have experienced.”
Head of School Mrs Olena Tovkun commented, “Thanks to our school, our children have grown up in an international environment, they understand the peculiarities of different peoples, their traditions and customs – it will also help them in the future when they join the global society. They are already cosmopolitans, I am sure that all our graduates deserve to continue studying at the most prestigious universities in the world. Ukraine will be waiting for you, you are its future, so be worthy of its values, its people, those who are now protecting our and your lives, fighting for your freedom and bright future!”
Afterwards, Mrs Tovkun presented the Ukrainian programme academics, who supervised BISU students over these years and helped them not only to get a high quality education, but also to grow up and become independent, well rounded individual.
The presentation was followed by the speech by Head of School Mrs Veronika Efimenko, “Today, we congratulate all those who have studied diligently and acquired vast knowledge at BISU. Some students have been in our school since their earlier years, and some have been with us even longer, as a second or third generation, whose elder siblings also graduated from our school. Each one of you today deserves a big applause as a token of our respect for your perseverance, intelligence, spirit and responsibility.
We also gave the floor to our students. Their opinion is very important for us, and we were keen to learn what impression and memories of BISU would stay imprinted in their souls.
12 Year student, a gold medal holder, Zlata-Daniella Mayslas says, “We are currently experiencing new life conditions, in such complicated times for all of us. Recent events have forced us to change rhythm and habits, locations and thoughts. Time is a strange thing, sometimes it flies, sometimes it drags on, but it always moves forward and never stops. I want us to take it as an example, so that we could be like time — always driving forward, everyone at their own pace, but without stopping or putting life on hold.
2 Year student, a gold medal holder, the school Head Boy, Andriy Melnyk adds, “I would like to thank you all, my teachers, my parents, my friends for these amazing 13 years in the school. I can surely say that I have known most of you for all my life. I have been here at every big event of the school. I would like to thank Mr Cole. We had some talks in the past, I know that you are a great person.”
Then the floor was given to Mr. Andriy Melnyk (Andriy Melnyk’s father), who had been staying with BISU for many years. His eldest son was our former student who, on graduating from BISU, obtained a bachelor’s dgree at King’s College and a master’s degree at Imperial College in London and became a successful entrepreneur.
Mr Andriy Melnyk says, “Let me congratulate us all on this graduation event. Unfortunately, it’s very different from the one we celebrated 7 years ago when my eldest son finished BISU. My both sons studied at BISU since they were 3 years old. At the very beginning, they could speak neither Ukrainian, nor English. And they started speaking three languages at once – English, Russian, Ukrainian. My friends would always ask me why you should spend so much money on your children’s studies? I have found the answer on 24th of February 2022. When we saw that all material possessions could be lost within a second, and only intangible things would remain. International education gives us broad opportunities. My eldest son has gone through the whole cycle of international education, and became a mature man. I can now be certain that he can take care of my youngest son, even if something bad were to happen to the parents. Schools can be difficult environments sometimes, but within the walls of BISU I could never imagine my children being offended or mistreated. I want to thank you all, all the staff, local and international. I am thankful for the support of the UK, I am amazed by the fact that Mr Cole has remained in Ukraine with us. I hope that peaсe will be restored soon. Slava Ukraine”.
His speech was followed by the Certificate-Award Ceremony.
The closing speech was delivered by Head of School, Mrs Galina Sava, “Dear our graduates! I want you to be worthy people. A worthy person is a person who deserves respect. A worthy person is one who performs worthy deeds to be valued by others. Be worthy sons and daughters of your parents. Dear parents, thank you for choosing and trusting our school. You should be proud of your wonderful children. May the success of your children surpass your personal success. We hope to see your wonderful grandchildren at school in a while.”
It was a nice, soul-moving get-together. We truly believe that next year we will be able to celebrate this momentous event in a free and peaceful Ukraine. It will be a splendid celebration: the girls will wear beautiful dresses and the boys will don proper suits, and we will arrange a feast the BISU community deserves.
Nivki Early Years and Lower Primary School
45 Tolbukhina Str., Kyiv
+38 (044) 239 21 21
+38 (066) 303 75 78
Nivki Upper Primary and Secondary School
45 Tolbukhina Str., Kyiv
+38 (044) 502 39 09
+38 (050) 410 46 44
Pechersk Early Years, Primary and Secondary School
1 Dragomyrova Str., Kyiv
+38 (044) 596 18 28
+38 (050) 412 48 84
Dnipro Early Years, Primary and Secondary School
39a Antonovychа Str., Dnipro
+38 (056) 767 18 28
+38 (050) 458 80 22