As of the beginning of 2023, Lithuanian language schools in the diaspora will be funded by the Lithuanian government. The allocation from the budget is 1.7 million euros for facility rental and maintenance, teacher salaries, and teaching supplies such as textbooks and digital devices.
Jurgita Šiugždinienė, minister of Education, Science and Sports says the funds are meant to enhance the quality of Lithuanian-language programs, so important for ensuring language retention in the diaspora. A per-student amount will be allotted each year and increased according to the scope of the program being followed. The funding is for schools registered and following programs approved by the ministry, with pupils registered on the ministry’s list of scholars.
According to the ministry’s registry, there are 238 Lithuanian-language schools in the diaspora, with 9,500 pupils and over 1,000 teachers. Previously, these schools were funded on a project basis at the rate of 300,000 to 500,000 euros annually. Project funding is still available upon application. In December, 2022, the Ministry of Education, Science and Sports announced its first competition for Lithuanian-language schools, Lithuanian educational or sports organizations to receive financing for projects, supplies and activities. The deadline is January 8, 2023. Another competition will be announced in the spring.