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IV Liceum Ogólnokształcące im. Generała Stanisława Maczka w Katowicach

(General upper secondary school named after General Stanisław Maczek) is a school for students aged 16 – 19 under the partnership of the Silesian University in Katowice. It is situated in the heart of the Upper Silesian region. Our school has about 500 pupils. They are taught on three-level basis, 5 or 6 classes on each level. At present there are 16 classes in the school. The curriculum we offer our students is broad, personalized and designed to build an enthusiasm for learning and high achievement. We provide an extensive range of subjects which give our students the widest opportunities for career and future learning choices. Our curriculum is constantly reviewed and developed in response to student needs. It also gives an opportunity for young people to develop a broad range of skills. Each of the classes has different extensions. Young people can gain knowledge in comprehensive classes of different profiles (English-maths and geography profile, biology-chemistry profile, maths-physics-IT profile and humanities with law elements profile, and Italian-English-biology profile). The youth can also broaden their minds participating in numerous interests clubs such as maths club called “Matemaczek”, young scholars club, Italian language lovers club, book readers club, volunteers clubs, European or drama club. Dance and music lovers can develop their interests in dance groups and cheerleading groups. The students sports-oriented are able to enrich themselves in aerobics, volleyball, basketball, handball, table tennis or even boxing classes. As a school we try to satisfy the needs of those who want to participate in various subjects competitions. Due to our cooperation with the Silesian University in Katowice, our students are able to participate in classes carried out by the University professors. Thus, our students are given a chance not only to be well-prepared for their final exams, but also to experience students’ life while still being at high school. Through all those activities we hope to bring up young people who can achieve success in their adult life, but are also prepared to fight the difficulties adulthood brings. ‘Maczek’ as it is frequently referred to, is an exciting place to be. The considerable and impressive achievements of our school in recent years are due to the hard work of our whole community: students, staff, and parents. We have got a very creative approach to education. At the same time, achievement is significantly above national averages.

Admissions criteria

The number of points indicated on the 3-year lower secondary school (gimnazjum)leaving certificate (based on the results achieved in specific subjects and other achievements) including the points received at the lower secondary school examination decides about the pupils' admission to an upper secondary school.

The detailed admission rules are defined by each post-lower-secondary schoolschool which opens admissions to new pupils.

Curricular control and content

At the level of upper secondary education there are curricula for separate subjects. The Ministry of Education defines core curricula for general education for each subject in all types of school. Subjects can be taught at basic and advanced (extended) level (a pupil can choose between 2 and 4 subjects which he/she follows with a view to taking the Matura examination including at least one of the following subjects: History, Geography, Biology, Chemistry or Physics). Teachers can choose the textbooks from a list approved by the ministry. They are free to decide the teaching and assessment methods, introduce innovative teaching methods and choose curricula which are approved by the school head. They can also develop their own curricula – based on core curricula – and submit them to their school head for approval.

Core subjects (included in outline timetables):

General upper secondary school: Polish language, 2 foreign languages, History, Civic education, Culture studies, Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Geography, Introduction to entrepreneurship, Information technology, Physical education, Education for safety, lessons for class tutor, lessons for additional subject teaching envisaged in the curriculum at advanced (extended) level.

Assessment, progression and qualifications

Assessment at this level of education is similar to the arrangements in compulsory education.

A pupil is promoted to a higher grade if he/she has received “acceptable” marks or above for all compulsory subjects at the end of the school year. In the case of one "unsatisfactory" mark the pupil can take an exam in this subject. A pupil who is not promoted and has not passed the exam has to repeat the same grade. (There is also a possibility of a conditional promotion of a pupil with one "unsatisfactory" mark only once during the educational cycle upon the consent of the teachers’ council).

At the end of the course, the school organizes final/matriculation examinations. The upper secondary school may issue a certificate for those who sat for and successfully completed the final examination, which is required for admission to higher education. The upper secondary school leaving examinations are national external exams.

Tomasz Biliński & Małgorzata Ruchała dla IVLO w Katowicach © 2006