Seven-year-old Vadym Kyrylov was promoted to the second grade after the first term in the first grade. “The teachers’ board has considered the parents’ application and resolved to promote Vadym ahead of schedule,” said Serhiy Duzhev, principal of Kamianets Podilsk Comprehensive School No. 5. The Kyrylov parents, who once worked at the now-bankrupt Elektroprylad Plant, are seeking jobs. They are ordinary people. They say their neighbor, a retired teacher, works very much with their son “on a humanitarian basis.”
Svitlana Bobrovnyk, deputy chief of the Khmelnytsky Oblast Education Department, told The Day, “Given the current hard times, this is an extraordinary event. I remember from my practice some children who were awarded general secondary education certificates at he age of fourteen and even thirteen. But they faced problems later on. For higher education institutions have no great wish for child prodigies. As a rule, such children do not stay behind in Ukraine. In the year before last, a 14-year-old boy left school No. 17 in the oblast center, and now he is in the US. The ahead-of-schedule education of child prodigies has both light and dark sides, which we try to put across to these children’s parents. They feel quite good in schools, but what then? Should we allow them to graduate? I think this issue will soon cease to be pressing. While the percentage of newborn child prodigies and mentally retarded was 2% in each case until recently, then now, according to the Kamianets-Podilsk Teachers College researchers, the percentage of newborn mentally retarded is 2.5%. Unfortunately, we cannot manage to curb this deleterious tendency. Why? The causes are social and environmental, meaning that now people in charge of education have to think what to do with the mentally handicapped representatives of the younger generation. For their number is constantly increasing.