To: Minister of Education, LSSR
Copy to: Director of the Mičiurnas State Farm Vocational School in Kaunas.
A statement from: Sprindžiūnas, Vytautas, son of Juozas, student at the Mičiurnas State Farm Vocational School in Kaunas, born in 1960, residing in Kaunas, Botanikos 6.
When I arrived for my field study class on June 13th of this year, I was summoned by the school's director who asked where I had been yesterday, June 12th. I replied that I had gone to Alytus to congratulate my friend, a priest, who had graduated from the seminary this year. Then the director and another individual unknown to me forced me with threats and intimidation to write an untruthful statement that I was withdrawing from the school of my own will. When, after I recovered from the initial effect of fear, I wished to withdraw my statement, the director would not return it to me and did not allow me to continue attending my field study classes.
Since the priest had graduated from a state approved seminary, I did not commit a misdeed by congratulating him. No one has the right to expel me from the vocational school for this; I never intended to withdraw from the school voluntarily, and wrote the statement only under coercion.
I ask you, Comrade Minister, to take up my defense, reject the forcibly obtained untruthful statement and enjoin the director to allow me to continue studying at the school.
Kaunas, 6/14/77 V. Sprindžiūnas
The Lithuanian SSR Education Ministry has announced that the statements of (Mrs) Šeduikienė have been looked into and the Telšiai Rayon Education Department will not be able to offer her employment due to lack of vacancies. (Teacher (Mrs) Šeduikienė was discharged from her position because of her religious beliefs.)
Švėkšna Middle School teacher Sigitas Urmolevičius gives believer students atheist books, orders them to study and talk on atheist subjects. On February 9, 1977 he summoned two students, 7a-grade student Jucys and 9-grade student Lam-sargis to the teacher's room and struck them for not answering atheist questions.
On February 19, 1979, 7b-grade homeroom teacher (Mrs) J. Šironienė of the Valkininkai Senatorium Boarding School was forced to write a statement (that she was resigning) of her own will from her teaching position (she had barely six months left until retirement), although she had often been awarded commendations from the Education Department and the Communist Youth League Central Committee for educating her students and pioneers well and for her conscientious work. Her homeroom classes always took first place in various contests held at the school.
The school administration and Party-member teachers had noticed that (Mrs.) Šironienė was a believer.
In December 1975, the then pioneer leader (Mrs) B. Bendo-raitienė decided to test the students' views during a biology class by asking questions about the origins of the earth and life. Some students said that God had created everything. During the next class, the teacher called on student D. Bazytė and assailed her with the purpose of learning whether she attends church. After class, (Mrs) B. Bendoraitienė interrogated students Česnulevičius and Kuncevičius who were residents of the children's home.
Students of grades 7a, 7b and 8 were given questionnaires with the following questions: Do you believe in God, have you been baptized, have you received Confirmation, who taught you the truths of faith? Students of grades 8 and 7a were warned by the teacher to reply, "non-believer." In grade 7a five out of fifteen students dared to answer honestly; and in grade 7b (Homeroom Teacher J. Šironienė) fourteen out of twenty-two students admitted being believers.
Then a campaign of persecution of believer students was launched. School Principal S. Gilius, Chief Homeroom Teacher (Mrs) O. Končienė, and Party Secretary (Mrs) Skliutienė began to ridicule homeroom teacher Šironienė and upbraid and threaten her for providing poor atheist upbringing. The above-mentioned teachers would daily detain the homeroom teacher until late evening. Her students also suffered, they were interrogated two to four hours per day. S. Gilius and J. Skliutienė harassed the orphan student A. Juozaitis in particular. He had boldly admitted to being a believer and is devoted to homeroom teacher J. Šironienė as to a mother. He was forbidden to ever again visit the teacher's apartment. The letters he wrote his brother were read and confiscated.
During the 1976-77 academic year, Principal S. Gilius assigned student T. Lebenskas to follow his friend A. Juozaitis. The new homeroom teacher was Soviet Union Communist Party member (Miss) B. Gaidelytė. She conducted a search of students' desks; 8b-grade students O. Šokaitytė and T. Anulytė were also assigned to search desks. Atheist upbringing has led to complete moral collapse: students no longer trust one another, they have begun to drink alcoholic beverages, smoke and lead dissolute lives.
Principal S. Giliushas forbidden Grade 8b girls to help former boarding school teacher (Mrs) R. Maciukonienė who is suffering from atheriosclerosis and is bedridden, simply because (Mrs) Šironienė, who is now unemployed, visits her.
Without the knowledge of his parents, Rimas Vasiliauskas, a student at the Vištytis Middle School, was enrolled in the Pioneers. At the beginning of the 1975 school year, when the school pioneer leader (Mrs) Zina Daugėlienė learned that Vasiliauskas served at Holy Mass, she strongly berated the student and threatened that he would never receive good grades. On another occasion, the pioneer leader again scolded Rimas and, grabbing him by the hair, shouted: "You know that a Pioneer cannot attend church! I will trample you on the spot, then you won't go any more!"
When summoned, Rimas' mother warned the teacher, "Teach the children knowledge and manners and don't ever pull my child's hair again!"