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The old legends say that our present capital of Lithuania, Vilnius was founded under a prophetic dream which Duke Gediminas dreamt and it was explained by pagan priest Lizdeika. Lithuania dates back to 1009, this year is found in historical sources and after Vilnius had become a capital, it grew in one of the famous cultural centres of central Europe with the help of Duke Gediminas‘ diplomatic government.

In the northern part of Lithuania a small railway town called Radviliškis was marked on the map of Grand Duchy of Lithuania at the beginning of the 16th century. This town has a gymnasium titled by the renowned pagan priest named Lizdeika. Under the legend the baby was brought to a nest by an eagle and raised there, later he became prophet Lizdeika. He was wise and clever, knew nature and understood the speech of animals, he had an eternal light in a Holy Oakery. The prophet was thought to be a conciliator between pagan gods and humans. Respecting the prophet‘s wisdom, his eternal cherishing values, our gymnasium tries to convey these things to the modern youth generation which lives in a hurry sickness and technological age. Every September (the first day of the school year) and during other gymnasium’s occasions the Altar of the gymnasium, which is kept by prophet Lizdeika and priestesses, is lit symbolically to cherish the traditions and reminisce the history of our nation.

The gymnasium dates back to 1919. At this year on the 19th of January Radviliškis Railway progymnasium opened its doors to schoolchildren. Later in 1941 it was reorganized into gymnasium. The first gymnasium generation finished it in 1944. The historical events influenced the actions which reorganized the gymnasium into the secondary school in 1949. The years passed and the school changed its name and the place several times. Since 1964 we have been working in the present building. After the Independence of Lithuania had been reconstituted, the first gymnasium grade was established in 1992. In 1993 the school received the name of Lizdeika. Moreover the status of gymnasium was attributed in 1997 and one year later the first gymnasium generation finished it. In 2006 the gymnasium became a four year upper secondary school and in 2008 adult formal education classes were also established.

The gymnasium is open to innovations: it was the first in the region which established the systems of the school electronic diary (on-line register) and intranet, it has website – www.lizdeika.lt and the account on Facebook. In 2014 the renovation of the gymnasium buildings and surroundings were finished, the exterior of the building was renewed and the gymnasium surroundings were arranged. The modern classes were equipped, the gymnasium hall and conference halls were renovated, the gym was modernized, another new gym with sport equipment was established and the stadium was improved.

Today Lizdeika’s gymnasium including adult classes is the oldest school in the town and the biggest – in the district. Every year the gymnasium has about 550 students with 20 class sets. The educational institution is governed by high qualification leaders: 70 teachers work in the gymnasium, 5 of them are experts, 40 teachers methodists, 15 senior teachers. The education institution has more than 30 people are service staff.

Apart from compulsory subjects students can choose other topical and attractive training programmes such as Defence of the country, Martial arts, Law, Strategy of success, Career planning, Psychology, Olympic tourism, Self-defence, Aerobics, Theatre, Drawing and others. The students are encouraged to learn more foreign languages they can choose apart from English to learn French, German, Spanish, Latin and Russian.

The Gymnasium enshrines the ideas of the Olympic movement. The school has won the award of the sportiest school in Lithuania several times. This educational institution cares a lot for academic students’ development. Students’ achievements and exam results are often higher than students’ results in the district and country. Gymnasium students achieve high results in the contests and olympiads of philology, languages, science, history, arts and information technologies. Our students have won the prizes in the local, national and international contests and olympiads, thus, Lizdeika’s gymnasium is an attractive and innovative educational institution.

Every year students and teachers of theatre, music and dance create the musical, which is shown not only in our district but in other towns and cities of the country. Calendar events of the gymnasium and country, various meetings with famous Lithuania’s people and important exhibitions are organized in the school every year. One of the most successful initiatives by the gymnasium is National ‘Žynys’ (Oracle) contest, which rallies the smartest students in various subjects from all around Lithuania to compete for becoming the Oracle of Lithuania. The gymnasium always holds the Day of European languages, the Day of Self-government, the Day of Mother-tongue, Earth Day, the event of the best Lizdeika’s student, conferences of Science and conferences of Health. During the summer time the school organizes a summer camp for smart students and those students who suffer from social disadvantage. Every student who achieves high academic results and who are the best at sports receive a monetary Lizdeika’s award. In addition former Gymnasium students participate in Gymnasium’s life actively. They initiate very important events, one of the former gymnasium students Vladas Krivickas, who at present lives in the USA, established his name award to support smart, entrepreneuring Lizdeika’s students aiming at a successful career and those who have already succeed in personal achievements, are able to use their dower and skills in the gymnasium and beyond, who are also contriver and creative, and generate new ideas. This idea is maintained by other former gymnasium students they support gymnasium with books, academic literature, school furniture and etc.

In 2014 the gymnasium became the member of the associated schools network of UNESCO and has chosen to work in the fields of health and preventive education, sports and sustainable development, and climate change. The institution has been implementing a lot of project programmes. Students and teachers participate in children and youth Olympic education programmes, programme ‘TAPK’, vocational volunteering programme ‘Kam to reikia? (Why we need it?)’, volunteering programme ‘Maltiečių sriuba (Maltese Soup)’. The gymnasium established EMILE class in 2010 (integrated learning with French), the project ‘I am a leader’, anticorruption programmes ‘Lab of Clarity’, Lithuanian cultural heritage programme ‘Looking for the mind of the nation’, ecological project ‘We sort’, several career planning projects using ICT and other national or international projects. The gymnasium actively participate in Erasmus+ programme and implement European partnership activities.

The educational institution constantly searches for a new educational environment and modern training methods, tries to organize an educational content which could be focused more on life practice. So, the gymnasium organizes trips to foreign countries and guests from other countries visit our gymnasium. We have met famous sportsmen, politicians, artists, NATO soldiers, former students who study and work abroad.

Ex-principal Jonas Varkulevičius is one of the most famous Olympic ideas promoter in Lithuania. In 2008 J. Varkulevičius carried Olympic torch in Sanya Hainan island. In 2010 he received the award of the honorary citizen’s name of Radviliškis town for various initiatives, innovations and promoting Olympic ideas to young people, district community and Lithuanian people. The principal published several books devoted to sports: ‘Olympians among us’ and ‘The Olympic spirit cannot be blown out’.

The teacher methodist of Information technologies Jolanta Kvedarienė is an active member of Folk Artists Union. Her needlework, embroideries, Lithuanian straw hanging gardens, photo pictures are exhibited in local and national exhibitions. The teacher is the member of the team published the photo album ‘Radviliškis senų iliustracijų atodangoje (Radviliškis in the exposure of old pictures)’. This book was published in 2013 and it shows the town’s history: how Radviliškis looked a hundred years ago, what its inhabitants did, worked, studied and spent their leisure. J. Kvedarienė is a very active member of Lizdeika’s community. She initiates and implements innovative and useful ideas in the institution which make the gymnasium famous in the country. Moreover it was her initiative the gymnasium joined the school network of UNESCO. The teacher participates actively in volunteering activities, she teachers seniors needleworks.

French teacher methodist Loreta Brobaitienė is a very active gymnasium teacher making Lizdeika‘s gymnasium famous for her non-traditional teaching of French her students. The teacher and her students create performances and participate with their works in national and international contests. Her students translate literature works from French to Lithuanian. The teacher initiated to establish EMILE classes (integrated learning with French) not only in our school but also in Radviliškis Gražina’s basic school. The teacher organizes trips to France to encourage her students to learn more cultural knowledge about the country.

The teacher expert of the Lithuanian language, Laimutė Verbickienė published her ebook ‘Ten kur laukia’. It is a novel about young girl’s life. The teacher’s students participate actively in literature contests and receive prizes.

The museum was established in 1995. It owns about 800 exhibits reminiscing the history of gymnasium. The exhibits are displayed separating the first gymnasium decades, relationships with former teachers and students, works by teachers and students, extra-curriculum activities, etc. Students are guides of the museum; they show and tell guests the history of the gymnasium.

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