Catherine the Great was a passionate reformer at all levels of Russian education. In 1766 she remodeled the Cadet Corps to accept students before age eight and extended their curriculum through age 21. The boys, referred to as junkers upon graduation, were then prepared to begin an officer’s military career. In 1786, still under Catherine, Russia established a Statute of National Education, a two-tiered system of primary and high schools. Education under the statute was free of charge and open to all classes.
Photo: Lobanovsky private collection. Jaroslav Lobanovsky in his cadet uniform, 1910