Ilyumzhinov's educational initiative “Chess in schools” conquers the world

On 12 September, Vertical clab held a seminar on chess dedicated to the opening of the academic year in Satka, Chelyabinsk region. Its participants discussed the main points of chess education, new approaches to learning, as well as the joint development of activities aimed at developing the cohesion of teachers and teamwork.

 In March 2012, the European Parliament adopted a special declaration “Chess at school”, in which chess for the first time in history began to be interpreted as an integral part of the education system and a promising academic discipline. As for Russia, the issues of chess education were raised in our country back in 1994, when chess became the official subject of elementary school.

In recent years, pilot projects using chess as an element of the educational system have been implemented in Argentina, Armenia, Brazil, Great Britain, Venezuela, Germany, Israel, India, Spain, Canada, Mexico, Turkey, the USA, France and several other countries.
2015 was marked by increase of government attention to chess education: at the end of March, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev instructed the Russian Ministry of Education and Science to study and support the educational initiative of the sixth FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov on introducing chess in in Russian schools.
It should be noted that Chess in Schools programme is the favourite brainchild of the sixth FIDE President. After fellow citizens elected Kirsan Ilyumzhinov the first president of Kalmykia in 1993, he introduced the teaching of chess as a separate subject in local schools with his first decree “On State Support of Chess”.
This was the beginning of the introduction of chess training throughout Kalmykia. Since then, they teach chess in all schools and kindergartens of Kalmykia. Later, the Chess in Schools global programme was born from this initiative. This is the first step towards the implementation of Ilyumzhinov’s global peacekeeping project “One Billion Chess Players.”
In 2017, the Minister of Education and Science of the Russian Federation Olga Vasilieva stated that school chess education - one of the best tools for developing the students’ intellectual abilities - should be present in every Russian school. In 2020, the Russian Ministry of Education plans to include chess classes in the federal educational standard.
All this confirms the correctness of the course of action chosen by the municipal authorities and pedagogical community of the Satka district in 2003. It was then that two educational projects “Chess universal education” and “Chess for general development” were adopted by educational institutions. Over 15 years, more than 20 thousand students have been trained in the basics of chess, that is, every fourth resident of the district.
The experience gained was highly appreciated in 2018: Satka district became the finalist of the All-Russian competition “Chess universal education in Russia”. For two years in a row - 2018 and 2019 - Satka became an active participant in the All-Russian conference "Chess universal education in Russia" held in Dagomys.
The participants came to the general conclusion that they shall continue their efforts. The new school year promises to be very eventful: a number of field meetings with the participation of teachers of Chelyabinsk region will be held. Satka district specialists will continue to actively broadcast their experience to other regions of Russia and expand international cooperation.