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History

DOCENDO DISCIMUS

 

History

History of Military Education

Over the past 20 years the military education has been subject to profound changes. Including former Czechoslovak Republic, these changes are still considered the most significant in its whole history. Even after the fall of the so called „Iron Curtain“ in 1989, which was during the existence of former Czech and Slovak Federative Republic, the Ministry of Defence was altogether in charge of 19 military schools.

In 2001 the government of the Czech Republic accepted documents regarding reform of the Czech Republic’s Armed Forces. This reform gave rise to a fundamental transformation of the military education system. A military education transformation goal was to eliminate large organizational structures and develop a simpler system of military schools that will be able to ensure high quality soldiers´ training in accordance with the manning needs of the Czech Republic’s Army.

Tasks related to the area of training and military education were defined by the Concept of Build up of Professional Army of the Czech Republic and Mobilization of the Armed Forces of the Czech Republic. This Concept was adopted by the government in 2002 and adjusted to the revised resource framework in 2003. Subsequently, these tasks were in 2005 elaborated into the Concept of Education of the Ministry of Defense’s Personnel, Development and Build up of Military Education for the period of years 2016 - 2020.

This transformation aimed to execute such changes to the military educational system so as to achieve a better cost-effectiveness. One of the goals was to make the military educational system more effective.

 

The Military School of Ground Forces in Vyškov and the Military Academy in Brno used to be ranked among the most distinguished educational institutions. Medical personnel were educated and trained by the Military Medical Academy of Jan Evangelista Purkyně in Hradec Králové. Military Department attached to the Faculty of Physical Education and Sport of Charles University in Prague was another special school workplace.

The original three independent military schools were merged on September 1st, 2004 to found one national school – the University of Defence. Two of its faculties were moved to Brno, the third - Faculty of Military Health Sciences was moved to Hradec Králové, while the NBC Defence Institute stayed in Vyškov. Foundation of the University of Defence created basic organizational conditions for a complex change of military education. The University became fully operational in accordance with Act no. 111/1998 Coll., on schools on September 1st, 2006.

In educating and training the middle-level personnel, it was military secondary schools that used to play a significant role. However, these schools were abolished as a result of transformation steps, and the Military High School and College of the Ministry of Defence in Moravská Třebová has become the succession organization. Even the Military Conservatory in Roudnice nad Labem ceased to exist in 2008. Completion of reduction of military secondary schools and reorganization of military education as a whole brought about even changes to the personnel education system of the Ministry of Defence, thus fulfilling a goal of the Czech Republic’s Armed Forces´ reform in the area of military education.

It referred not only to organizational changes consisting in the reduction of military schools, but also to the most significant changes occurring in the contents of education. Furthermore, new educational and study programs have been accredited, reflecting current needs of the Czech Republic’s Army. Another change implied elimination of politicized education of career soldiers.

The quality of education and training readiness of career soldiers have increased substantially, enabling them to fulfill demanding tasks arising from the interests of the Czech Republic and its membership in NATO. Nowadays, highly educated, recognized and first class specialists in their fields graduate from military schools, otherwise unable to receive similar education and training of the same quality elsewhere. A big amount of graduates from foreign military schools contributes to it too.

Integration of study programs and branches initiated during the academic year 2003/2004 aimed to increase the efficiency of military academic education. Also, a substantial reduction of study programs and branches was executed, followed by a change in the number of personnel securing instructions of these study programs.

Based on requirements for the profile of a universally educated and professionally trained career soldier, significant changes were made to the contents of newly accredited study programs and branches of the University of Defence. At the same time the university education became separated from training and career training of career soldiers to conduct respective occupied systemized position of a soldier. The realization substance of this measure got reflected into the development of application courses for graduates of bachelor study programs with the Military Academy in Vyškov commissioned to conduct them in June 2006.

A principle adopted by the Concept of Build up defines that education achieved by studies at the University of Defence must be comparable with university civil education provided by public schools and universities as well as acceptable within the EU. Concurrently, conditions have been created for soldiers to assert themselves after termination of their career contracts (military careers) in their secondary careers in the labor market of the civilian sector.

Education of majority of recruits was introduced in education of career soldiers requiring university education in specialties with accredited study branches at the University of Defence. Nevertheless, based on the requirements of individual components of the Army of the Czech Republic and the Ministry of Defence, the personnel may be in other specialties educated not only at domestic civilian schools, but also at military schools abroad.​

   
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