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The role of school in the post-war reconstruction of the community


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Čorkalo Biruški, Dinka and Ajduković, Dean. (2003). The role of school in the post-war reconstruction of the community. Dijete i društvo: časopis za promicanje prava djeteta(2-3). pp. 219-234. ISSN 1332-3210

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One of the biggest challenges for the helping professionals after the war is the process of reconstruction of destroyed ties between persons who used to have neighborly, friendly or simply close relationships, but found themselves on the opposite sides in the conflict. The experiences of post-conflict societies show that the process of trust building and normalization of social life is far slower and more demanding than the material renewal. This process is especially difficult in divided communities, as Vukovar is, where Croats and Serbs live in the same town but With practically parallel lives, and almost no mutual contacts. This division is evident in all aspects of social life, expanding also into the area of schooling. The legal norms of the Republic of Croatia guarantee the possibility of specific forms of minority education. However, in Podunavlje case this means practically segregated schooling of the children from Croatian and Serbian background. The children attend separate classes, divided according to the ethnicity, and the curriculum is provided either in Croatian or in Serbian language. In this way the basic condition for normalization of the intergroup relations — contact — is hampered. Everyday, normal contact, based on reciprocity and equal status, enabling children to meet their peers from the Other group and to form Close relations and friendship is almost nonexistent. However, some parents from within both ethnic communities are not satisfied With separation of children in the schools. They are worried about their future education and their mutual relationships in the community. This is Why we decided to investigate what do pupils, their parents and teachers in Vukovar schools think about the current system of education. The questionnaire was administered that encompassed several aspects of attitudes toward schooling: value of education for one's life, attitudes toward school integration and social integration of children from different ethnic background in general, attitudes toward religious education in the schools, and attitudes toward multiculturalism. In this paper the preliminary results obtained on the sample of 119 pupils of Croatian and Serbian nationality in 8th grade of elementary school are presented. The results are discussed having in mind the complexity of the issues of minority education, possibilities of school integration in Podunavlje and implications which such integration could have for tolerant and cooperative intergroup relations and for social reconstruction of the divided community.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: split environment, relationship reconstruction, research on the existing school system
Subjects: Psychology > Socijalna psihologija
Departments: Department of Psychology
Date Deposited: 30 Jul 2018 09:09
Last Modified: 30 Jul 2018 09:09

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