Estonia

Surju Basic School is situated in a small town called Surjuin Pärnu County, in the south-western part of Estonia, not far from the Baltic Seaand the border of Latvia. The region is flat and mainly covered by forests,bogs and fields. The population in Saarde parish, where the school is located,is approximately 4000 people. Most of the locals are employed in forestry andagriculture.
There is one school and a kindergarten in Surju. The history of education hereis not well known because during the wars and the Soviet occupation a lot ofdocumentation was destroyed. The oldest mentions of schools in the area havebeen found in documents dating back to 1770.
Today, there are 70 students aged 7-16 years in Surju Basic School, and thenumber of our students has remained relatively stable in recent years. Thereare 18 members in the school’s faculty, some of whom work part-time. Our aim isto ensure that not a single student will drop out of school and that talentedstudents have initiative to stay in our school. We strive to guarantee that ourstudents can acquire widespread knowledge and can broaden their outlook andexperience.
Our current schoolhouse was built in 2000 and forms a spacious educationcomplex with a kindergarten, a gym, a hiking trail and a stadium. We haveplenty of opportunities to enjoy the natural greenery around us. It is possibleto see wild animals from the windows of our schoolhouse, for example roe deer,foxes, squirrels, storks, etc. Therefore it is not surprising that our studentsare good in Science, having won several prizes in science competitions. Afterthe lessons our students can learn and practise robotics, music, woodwork,football and chess in our extracurricular programmes that are financed by the localgovernment. Our chess-players have won several medals in Estonian Championshipsand attended European and World Championships. Students of our school also likea computer-based maths game called Pranglimine (Mental Maths), and our team hasbeen the best among basic schools in Estonia several years running: ourstudents have even participated in international championships.
We have a student government named „Oma Riik” („Our Own State”), where studentsimitate the real functions of the state, for example elections and organizingdifferent kinds of actions.