On Thursday, registration for the mandatory free adaptation program and Estonian language training will begin for all Ukrainian war refugees receiving temporary protection status in Estonia. The Police and Border Guard (PPA) is currently contacting all adults who receive temporary protection in Estonia, with the first 2,500 invited to study the Estonian language.
"Knowledge of the Estonian language, at least at a basic level, is essential in order to manage independently in our country and to adapt to the society here," said Piret Hartman, undersecretary for cultural diversity at the Estonian Ministry of Culture.
Hartman explained, that the adaptation program, which includes Estonian language training is free of charge and also mandatory for Ukrainian war refugees receiving temporary protection status in Estonia.
"We are extremely flexible in offering trainings – in addition to the fact that the training can be completed online, there are plans to hold trainings in all regions of Estonia, where recipients of temporary protection live. On our part, we will do everything to ensure that everyone can find a suitable way and time to complete a useful training," said Hartman.
Recipients of temporary protection status in Estonia must register independently, both for the adaptation program and Estonian language training, via the 'Settle in Estonia' online portal.
In total, five language schools currently offer Estonian courses for foreigners, each consisting of 100 academic hours, either online or face-to-face in class.
An extraordinary state procurement is also set to be announced in the summer to provide language for an additional 900 recipients of temporary protection status.
According to a press release from the Ministry of Culture, 4.5 million euros will be allocated from the budget to support the adaptation and language learning programs, with over 9,000 slots available for recipients of temporary protection status.
Single day training sessions as part of the adaptation program for recipients of temporary protection will also be supported with 4.6 million euros from the 2022 budget.
For the first 10,000 recipients of temporary protection status, training programs are already underway, with a tender set to be announced in July in order to find providers of an additional 10,000 study places.
There will also be opportunities to complete the adaptation program independently by following an online course, with a tender currently being prepared to find content producers to create educational videos specifically for that purpose.
Estonian language training for those under temporary protection status in Estonia is currently being offered at the following schools:
Sola:Integra OÜ in the PPA region of Northern Estonia,
Multilingua Keelekeskus OÜ, Tallinn,
OÜ PR Reiting in the PPA region of South Estonia,
Algus OÜ in the PPA region of Eastern Estonia
Folkuniversitet Estonia MTÜ, Tartu.
In the PPA region of Western and Central Estonia, no providers have yet been confirmed.
Editor: Michael Cole