Mr Putin invited Mr Lukashenko to visit the centre so as to see how such facilities work. Earlier, the two presidents discussed the possibility of having children from Belarus come to study at educational centres in Russia.
The Sirius educational centre was established at Mr Putin’s initiative by the Talent and Success Foundation and uses facilities that were originally built for the Sochi Olympics. The centre’s aim is to identify at a young age, nurture and provide further professional support to gifted children from throughout Russia, who show exceptional ability in the arts, sport, science, and technical fields.
The centre works year-round and provides free education to 600 children aged 10–17, accompanied by more than 100 teachers and trainers raising their professional qualifications. Teaching is provided by top teachers from schools specialising in sports, maths and physics, and chemistry and biology, and from leaders in arts fields such as classical music and ballet and the fine arts.
The centre offers a 24-day programme that includes specialised classes and also general classes to develop leisure activities, master classes, meetings with recognised professionals in the various fields, a programme of health and revitalising activities, and, during the school year, general school tuition.