Anyone that has had the honor of getting an education in the countryside wish to comment?
Not in the countryside but a very small city so almost the same...
It was a little more complicated than 'no English teachers'. There were others factors involved like:
- many teachers of Russian
- lack of money in schools.
So schools couldn't just replace Russian teachers (social issues, strong unions, Russian teachers as an old employees were often in school management).
It was gradual process wich was taking place in entire 90'. So for example schools were increasing a number of English hours in line of Russian teachers reaching retirement age and number of English teachers on the market...
So in case of a child of a breakthrough like me from a province with one leg in communism era and the second one in the modern era it was like this:
- primary eduaction -> one language = Russian
- secondary education -> two languages = Russian and English (teachers = a Pole and two North Americans from Peace Corp, very nice ladies btw. )
- uni -> whatever I liked and manage to sign for, so English and Russian again was my choice :-)
Other similar routes in Polish school system were German + Russian->English, or more rare French + Russian->English.
To sum things up, switching from Russian to English in polish schools was a long process which was taking place in entire 90', where things like rarity of English teachers and abundance of Russian teachers was a main driving force.
So don't expect much of English in older generations :-) Besides everybody knows that in the long term German and Russian are more important languages to a Pole ;-) They are around much longer and always are coming back... ;-) Before it was Latin, then French for a short time, now it is English, next one will be probably Mandarin, but our mighty neighbours will remain the same probably :-)