President Pavel Meets Prague City Leaders To Discuss Education and Housing

President Pavel met with representatives of the Prague city administration, following a commemoration for the victims of communism. Photo credit: Zuzana Bonisch /

Prague, June 28 (CTK) – President Petr Pavel met with representatives of the Prague city administration during a visit to the Prague City Hall yesterday. He told reporters the discussions mainly focused on capacity in the education sector, and also touched upon transport and housing.

After a debate attended by members of the City Council, chairs of the assembly members’ groups and mayors of the city districts, Pavel said the state could use part of the money from a planned loan from the European Union to increase school capacities in the capital.

In mid-June, the government approved an update of the National Recovery Plan, including a loan from the European Commission, which is expected to total around CZK 137 billion.

He noted that his program in Prague on Wednesday would mainly concern housing.

Pavel sees his role as connecting people at different levels. His visits to the regions, he said, show the interconnected character of individual problems and the need for greater coordination, which he as a president can provide.

The debate was only open to the media for the first five minutes. In his introduction, Pavel said he had been travelling to the regions to learn as much as possible about local problems and the specific features of the regions.

Prague Mayor Bohuslav Svoboda (ODS) then said in his opening speech that in his position he tried to cooperate as much as possible with municipalities and the government, noting that thanks to the participation of the president, the line now stretches from the smallest Prague district to Prague Castle, the seat of the Czech president.

Prior to his visit to the City Hall, the president visited Cimburkova Primary School in Zizkov. Regarding the education system, Pavel said that the Czech school system must offer education to all and be inclusive, noting that there was no such system yet.

“Our system should ideally provide education of the same standard for all students in primary, secondary and higher education,” Pavel said. “That is, it should be inclusive in principle. We all know that it is not yet. The system has not been refined to provide fully inclusive education, it is not yet sufficiently prepared in terms of methods and numbers of people to be able to cater to some pupils with special needs, whether these are determined by their social environment or the specific features of their ethnicity.” 

He said it was necessary to work in the long term on making people more tolerant of differences.

Pavel and his wife Eva arrived shortly after 11am at the Prague Mayor’s residence on Marianske namesti, and then had lunch with Svoboda, his wife Pavla and other members of Prague City Council. This was followed by a meeting on education issues and a debate with the leadership of Prague and its municipalities.

Before that, he also attended a commemorative meeting in memory of the victims of communism at Ujezd.

On Wednesday, he will visit the Center for Architecture and Urban Planning, the construction of the D metro line and the Jahoda community family centre in Prague-Albertov, which focuses on work with children and youth.

Pavel has already visited the Moravian-Silesian, Liberec and Vysocina Regions. Before assuming office, he visited the Usti and Karlovy Vary regions.

Pavel’s predecessor in office, Milos Zeman, was also touring the regions, especially during his first mandate, but never paid an official visit to Prague.

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