Introduction to the Arts Education System in Belarus

The system of arts education existing in the Republic of Belarus nowadays is characterized by multi-subject character, multi-functionality and variation. Its structure and contents allow us to implement the main ideas specified in concept documents issued by UNESCO.

The system of arts education in the Republic of Belarus is viewed in the unity of its formal and informal components. The former one means education, which is carried out at educational institutions. And the latter means education carried out at organizations and institutions, where arts education is not basic.

Within the formal sector the spheres of basic and lifelong education are distinguished. Basic education is subdivided into five levels: pre-school education, general secondary education, vocational training, specialized secondary and higher education. Within the lifelong education they distinguish out-of-school education and in-service training and retraining of specialists.

In the education system of the Republic of Belarus a socio-cultural dimension of arts education is being emphasized. It is defined as «education through art». Its difference from the traditional arts education lies in its orientation on a creative potential of a person and therefore on creation of a free cultural and intellectual resource necessary to solve urgent tasks facing modern society. The essence of the traditional arts education can be disclosed through the category «training» (a listener, audience, a performer, a pedagogue). The functional area of education through art is wider; it can be interpreted through such categories as «formation», «development», «rehabilitation» and «adaptation».