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Strategy and-conception-of-changes pdf


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Strategy and-conception-of-changes pdf

  2. 2. The Republic of Srpska Ministry of Education Strategy and conception of changes in the system of education in the Republic of Srpska Prepared and drafted by: Nenad Suzic, Ph. D. Lectored by: Vojislav Gakovic This document was considered and adopted by theGovernment of the Republic of Srpska at its session held on july 10. 1998. Printed by: “Trioprint”, Banja Luka 4
  3. 3. STRATEGY AND CONCEPTION OF CHANGES IN THE SYSTEM OF EDUCATION IN THE REPUBLIC OF SRPSKA The present conditions in education and measures for the problem solutionThe state of facilities 7The state of equipment and devices 10The teaching staff 11Economical situation in education 13Level of organisation of schools 15Organisation of the Ministry of education 18Curriculum (and programmes) 22Normative regulations 27 The main changes in the system of educationThe aims of education 32Directions of development of education 44Training for life in the XXI century 53Normative regulations 56Regulation of curriculum (and programmes) 58 Subject matters of the essential national program 58 New Serbian school after the European model 59Decision making and management in education 61Organisational changes in the systemExperimental schools 63 Primary and junior high school concept 66 Modern European secondary school 74European standards at the university of the Republicof Srpska 88Programme for advanced teachers training 108Introduction of the system of professionaladvancement of teachers 113Reorganisation of the Ministry of education 114 Scheme of institutions of the Ministry of education 114 Institutions important for the ministry activity 114 Republic Pedagogic Institute 115 5
  4. 4. Inspectorate of the Ministry of Education 116System of implementation of changes (expert teams,projects, control, valorisation, experts from europe andthe world...) 119General issues in the strategy of changesRelations with Serbia and the Federal RepublicYugoslavia 122Relation with the Federation of Bosnia andHerzegovina 123Some ideological issues (religion classes, east – west,splitting with real – socialism…) 125 6
  5. 5. THE PRESENT CONDITION OF FACILITIES IN EDUCATION AND MEASURES FOR THE PROBLEM SOLUTION The state of facilities In the Republic of Srpska students attend classes in 187primary and 88 secondary schools. At the level of higher and higheducation, there are 27 institutions, faculties and higher schools.In March 1996, three institutions of the Republic of Srpska havefinished a huge survey on education. The analyses in question arefrom “The urban office of the Republic of Srpska in Banja Luka”,“Faculty of economy institute” and the Ministry of education.From them, we are giving the following information.Table 1 Numb Num Numb Funds needed er of ber er of for recon- for buildi of studen struction new objects Institution ngs teach ts in DM in DM ers Central pri- mary school 187 6.715 131.684 118.187.786 128.806.950 Sub school 550 Secondary school 88 3.120 54.757 44.753.664 17.818.000 Higher school 3 57 1850 1.100.000 - University 24 1.203 12.829 99.411.000 5.920.000 Total: 852 11.095 201.120 263.452.450 152.544.950Table 2: Information about school in May 1998. Numb Number er of of EmployeesInstitution school students teachers others totalPrimary sch. 189 127.952 7.350 3.150 10.500Secondary s. 90 51.908 3.220 1.316 4.536Higher sc. andUnivers. 37 9.337 1.203 509 1.712Total 316 189.197 11.773 4.975 16.748 7
  6. 6. Three levels of damages have been registered onschool facilities:1. burned , pulled down and destroyed objects2. objects damaged in the war (shelling, war activities),3. objects damaged due to being inhabited by soldiers or refugeesTwo kinds of needs have come out of this: a) rehabilitationand reconstruction of objects and b) construction of newobjects. Rehabilitation and reconstruction refer to objectsdamaged by bombing or war activities and by soldiers andrefugees during their staing in them. Burned, pulled down ordestroyed facilities can be compensated only by the con-struction of new ones. The need for construction of newbuildings has been influenced by the migration of populationbecause of war activities. In “bordering municipalities”, ofthe Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, a number ofschool buildings is on the territory of the BH Federation,while students and their parents have come to live in theRepublic of Srpska, and significant resources are needed fornew schools in these areas.All this is a great problem and a great burden for theRepublic of Srpska. Such a condition will be a burden fordeveloped countries, let alone for a country whose economyworks at 15% of its capacity at the beginning of 1998. It isencouraging that the world community is helping theRepublic of Srpska. According to the information obtainedby the International Management Group, under the lead ofDaniel Vanago in January 1998, 367 international projectshave been opened or realised in the Republic of Srpska in theprevious period, which cost the amount of 40.044.710 DM.All these projects refer to rehabilitation and reconstruction ofschools. That proves that the help of the internationalcommunity has been concrete and is an important support tonormalisation of conditions in education in the Republic of 8
  7. 7. Srpska. In these projects, a number of international huma-nitarian institutions have taken part, such as: ODA, IRC,IOCC, SRSA, USAID, ADRA, DMH, UNOPS, UMCOR,Solidarites, THW, SFOR, IFOR, SA, Parsons, WV Austria,UNHCR, PEW, ECHO, UNDP, PRONK, EB, Netherlands,DOOS-HEKS, Switzerland, NMFA, NCA – Norway,Ireland, ARD, Greece and others. Besides the help of theinternational community, the Government of the Republic ofSrpska has also invested in the reconstruction. Those weremodest funds, but a support to a number of schools. Had itnot been for these investments, the situation in schoolswould have been catastrophic. We can say that the conditionof school facilities has been rehabilitated at about 30%compared with the projected optimum for the realisation ofschool programs and curriculum.. Measures that the Ministry of education and the Government of Srpska will ungertake for the reconstruction and rehabilitation of school facilities1. Make an inspection into the realisation of all Government and international projects and state who the donor is, who carries out the projects, at what phase the projects are so that further work can be done. (this activity has already been finished)2. Make the priority list of schools, which have to be rehabilitated, reconstructed and constructed. (this activity is being carried out by the Ministry of education and the Project Implementation Unit)3. Elaborate a number of projects after the methodology of the World bank (WB) with all demonstrations requested: reasons for constructing a school at a certain location, benefits for the population, location in the school net of RS, budget… Projects which have been made: Rehabilitation and reconstruction of 42 schools – submitted to the Government of Japan, rehabilitation and 9
  8. 8. reconstruction of 6 schools – submitted to the World Bank and is being realised.4. Determine the school facilities which are not in the priority of international donors, but need an urgent intervention, make an estimation of all investments needed and deliver them to the Government of RS so that it can intervene accordingly. The Ministry of education is doing this activity. The state of equipment and devices School equipment has been damaged along with the schoolfacilities. The reasons are various:- war actions, bombing, shelling, fire,- soldiers and refugees were accommodated in schools,- electrical devices have been broken due to the power loss,- old furniture have additionally been damaged by negligence, without renewal.Schools had been working under war conditions for yearsand after the war in such poor economical situation that itwas impossible to buy a blackboard, a chair let alone amodern device. This has brought students into situation to siton shabby chairs and teachers to teach, using a chalk and ablackboard. The main source of knowledge in suchconditions is the word of a teacher (verbalism), but a word ofa de-motivated, badly paid teacher. If add that classroomswere not heated, we can presume under what conditions thelessons were conducted.Measures for (providing) equipment and devices provision1. To make an Instrument to inspect the state of equipment and devices in schools in RS, to check the conditions in all schools in the Republic of Srpska in three phases: a) the first phase – missing or shabby and the most needed 10
  9. 9. equipment, such as blackboards, chairs, benches, hangers, b) the second phase – the state and needs for the most necessary educational devices: graph-scopes, projectors, TV sets, videos, copiers … , c) the third phase – the condition of equipment and devices compared with European standards.2. To inspect the conditions of equipment in RS (instrument from point 1 will be applied in May 1998, and the supervision of its correctness will be done by a team of experts from the world, Government of RS and experts chosen by the Ministry of education).3. Make an instrument to inspect the conditions according to the phase three and inspect the conditions in all schools in RS. (the activity is being carried out by the Ministry of education during the year 1998).4. Make the priority list of schools to be equipped (will be done by the Ministry of education in 1998).5. Design projects following the priority list and submit them to donors from the international community and the Government of RS, so that they can equip the schools in phases according to levels from Point 1. (PIU – Implementation Unit Banja Luka is responsible for this, term 1998).6. To inform the Government of RS about these activities regularly. (Ministry of education is responsible for this; a continuous activity). Teaching staff All reforms in education failed on the key factor of reformperforming, on teaching staff. If the teaching staff is notinterested in or willingly engaged in the realisation ofprojected changes in the system of education, it is hard toexpect any positive results. That is the experience of allschool reforms, both in the world and in our country. Yearsof the civil war in BH, almost no payment to teachers till 11
  10. 10. 1998 and the lack of interest from the authorities forproblems in education have given many negative results:1. unsatisfied and depressive teaching staff, de-motivated for teaching and work in his profession,2. an imperilled existence and dignity of teachers because they could not fulfil their consumers baskets, they could not dress properly or buy professional literature, spend a holiday, but had to do other jobs like standing behind the counter, under the open sky and so on,3. many teachers want to leave their profession looking for those jobs in which they could earn in a dignified way,4. devaluation of teachers profession in the eyes of ordinary people – pity and admiration do not go together for the same person, at the same time,5. being unpopular, the profession of a teacher attracts only those who failed to pass entrance exams at some more attractive faculties6. Teaching staff has no confidence or trust in the state and the government, nor in the state institutions or the minister of education as the representative of education in the government of the Republic of Srpska.This means that a long and patient activity of theGovernment and state institutions is needed to rehabilitateeconomical situation in education, to restore the dignity of ateacher, gain confidence of teachers in measures undertakenby the Government and its institutions, and finally, toachieve a necessary motivation of teachers for their devotedcommitment in new curricula. In spite of all these circumstances, our teachers have stoodall war misfortunes, problems with shortages and standard oflife and deserved admiration of citizens:- they worked in war conditions, doing their best to meet the requirements of curricula as best as possible- they worked for months without any payment or with the payment which is not worth mentioning 12
  11. 11. - after the war they have worked under unbearable economical conditions, without proper textbooks and literature, without any devices, in cold classrooms – it became almost normal to see teachers and their students sitting in classrooms in winter coats- even in such circumstances, students of the Republic of Srpska have been winning many competitions in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, pass entrance exams and enrol faculties.This proves that the teachers of the Republic of Srpska arecapable of meeting the demands and challenges of a modernsystem of education that will be introduced by the conceptSerbian schools after the European model. Our teachers willsoon acquire the application of new teaching methods ofactive teaching, modern curricula and techniques. Economical situation in educationDuring the self-managing period, education had been treatedas consumption or as a social burden. Such awareness hasbeen dominant till these days. Budget for education has beenat the level of the least developed countries for years. Thesituation has not essentially changed since the period of self-management ended. Education has been treated asconsumption. This started to be changed by the appointmentof the new government in 1998. In the first budget planeducation got 14 % of the total budget. This would havebeen an excellent percentage had the economy not startedwith 15 % of its capacity in the beginning of the same year.Although the income of the economy is that low, thegovernment has undertaken a number of measures torehabilitate the conditions in education.Due to the inherited mistrust in the Government of RS andstate institutions and a desperate economical situation, thebranch union went on strike in the beginning of 1998. The 13
  12. 12. Union had righteous demands, but also a number ofoversights in the strike organisation and a few claims thatcould not be justified. It turned out that it was moreimportant for the Union to claim some old debts than to lookfor a systematic solution to some status questions ineducation. It was more important to demand small dues thana salary increase, regular payments, meeting the needs of theconsumer basket… After a discussion with representatives ofthe Government, initiated by the Minister of education, theGovernment of RS accepted a set of measures to helpeducation:- to pay the staff regularly- to increase the budget for education in accordance with the increase of budget- accomplishment- to ask the international community to help education in order to overcome such state in educationBy our own efforts and by the help of EU and the worldcommunity, teachers started to be paid better. Budget hasalso become bigger due to the cessation of grey economyand the support from the international community.Employees have been paid for years, without being taxed.Even in state services, till the end of 1997, employees werepaid without being taxed. The first salary paid after allobligations had been fulfilled was paid in education. Thisshows that the establishment of a legal system is the aim ofall society levels, especially of education in RS. Theprevious period, in which this was not the matter of concern,could be called a naïve egocentric national phase, in whichthe people and the leaders behave irresponsibly, self-sufficient, happy to have a state but unaware of the fact thatthey are destroying it, since they don’t know how tomaintain and create it. A state is a dynamic and a verycomplex system that is split if it is not maintained anddeveloped. The dynamics of the system depends on thesurrounding and global trends in the world. In order to be an 14
  13. 13. actual part of the world, a state has to follow modernachievements in science, economy, culture, marketing,design … Only those countries that have efficient andmodern system of education can follow modern trends. Themost developed countries are aware that education is notconsummation but a profitable investment. Determination of the new government of the Republic ofSrpska is to continuously work to improve the economicalsituation in education shows that it is a modern government,which understands its place and role in relation to nationalinterest of the Republic of Srpska. The period of nationalexcitement and selfishness must be replaced by the period ofreason and a clear vision of the future of the nation incontemporary world. The level of school organisationA very low level of school organisation has a few objectiveand a few partial roots. Instead of describing the conditions,we will give a few features typical for the majority ofschools:- principals took care more about how to find a donor to paint the school or pay the teachers then about the curricula- Criteria for appointment of a principal was, first of all, party membership. It was more important that a principal belonged to the ruling party than that he had professional and moral qualities- The law says that the Minister appoints principals in secondary and primary schools, under the proposal of the school board. This board consists of at least two teachers, one parent and two representatives of the founder (municipality). A principal could have propose two teachers and one parent, the Executive council of the local Assembly could have proposed two representatives from the same party, and we could have had a single- 15
  14. 14. party school board, and the principal proposed him, himself- The problem of school organisation is not only principals. There is a question of a uniform methodology of plan making. The Republic Pedagogic Institute drafts methodology for a yearly plan. Many principals did not respect that methodology up till now, or they decided to follow it formally, so that yearly school plans presented one unmatchable mess of data, given in as many ways as there were school principals.- The work of pedagogues in schools has also been diffuse, from those who were always on duty to those who performed the most complicated professional; tasks in a school. Although we have an appropriate methodology for making a programme for a pedagogue, in practice in schools this is carried out differently.- Employing new teachers is a special problem of school organisation. The present law allows many improvisations and principal’s self-will. It so happens that in Grammar schools, the most eminent schools, those with stronger party connections get a job, not the best.- A special problem is the connection between school boards and principals. In our practice, a school board represents a state institution and local authorities that rule the school. In practice the school boards have been substitutes for workers councils. Besides that, in many schools the school boards do not function at all.- In a number of schools, ilegal activities of principals have been registered: payment for enrolment and other duties illegally, privatised managing with money – principals pay salaries, personally, illegal enrolment of special students and the similar.The mentioned examples only partially show some of theproblems of school organisation. We do not deal with anumber of sophisticated psychological-organisational prob-lems of school-managing, such as: privileged teachers 16
  15. 15. (because of party belonging or after a personal criteria),politics in teachers’ rooms, persecution of non-sympathisersand political opponents (some teachers got fired due topolitical reasons), autocratic and a rigid attitude of someprincipals and so on. Namely, the current regulations forprimary and secondary schools give principals an almostunlimited power. Therefore, many principals started tobehave as owners of schools and inviolable masters ofteachers and their rights out of work. These are specialorganisational problems that have to be solvedsystematically and without improvisations. Measures for improvement of the school work organisation Out of the survey about the problems in schoolorganisation a number of measures for its improvements canbe derived, which will make the work of schools better..1. Along with regular salaries, schools have to be given proper amounts of money for material expenses, in order to stop indecent “manager-like” intervention of principals working on collecting sponsors’ contributions.2. To introduce more moral, professional and organisational suppositions into the criteria for the elections of principals.3. Principals should be responsible to the teaching-staff, law and the institutions of the system and not to the ruling party or the party they belong to.4. To prevent the possibility of manipulation with law when a principal of a school is elected, and when a principal “appoints him” through the school board.5. To create a new, modern and rational methodology for programming the schoolwork. Those principals who can not or do not want to respect the methodology should be sanctioned because the yearly programme is the ID card of the school and the principal. 17
  16. 16. 6. The work of pedagogues at schools should be risen to an appropriate level through co-ordination at the level of the Republic Pedagogic Institute, through seminars and the similar.7. To define and sanction by law, special criteria for the selection of teachers and for employment, in order to prevent self – will and improvisation with employment.8. To create suppositions for a successful activity of the school boards and insert these suppositions into law of secondary and primary schools.9. To prevent illegal actions in schools through a firm application of law and educational inspections.10. To start a school for professional training of principals of schools, in which the principals will be trained for modern school managing, for creating a wished emotional atmosphere in schools and favourable human relations. This programme is being realised in Serbia, in the organisation of the Teachers’ faculty in Belgrade. The same programme should be implemented in the Republic of Srpska. Organisation of the Ministry of educationOne of the most serious problems during the change ofgovernment in normal democratic procedures is a badorganisation of a relevant Ministry. Taking over theresponsibility at the Ministry of education, we were facedwith a number of problems:- The Minister of education was resigning, his tasks wereperformed by Social Affairs Vice-president, who was theMinister of science and culture. That is why nobody couldbe consulted about many genuine questions important for thework of the Ministry of education.- In certain segments the hierarchy did not function in the Ministry of education. 18
  17. 17. - The republic Pedagogic Institute, as a technical service of the Minister of education, did not execute its essential function. A marginal approach to this institution could be perceived from the side of the Minister of education, as all the functions of the Ministry of education were conceptualised at Pale, and the service has its seat in Banjaluka, where the biggest number of supervisors were located.Table 3: Scheme of organisation of the Ministry of Education Minister Deputy Minister Assistant for Assistant for Assistant for Assistant for primary secondary high economic education education education affairs Operational service Legal service Financial PIU Pedagogic service Institute Director Secretary Assistant for Director Deputy general economic Deputy director A lawyer affairs director Detached unit Inspection in service Bijeljina Bijeljina Detached unit Inspection Computation Lawyer Doboj service service Doboj Banjaluka Detached unit Inspection Architect Srbinje service Srbinje Detached unit Inspection Computation Administrativ Prijedor service service e worker Prijedor Pale Inspection service Total number Total number Total number Total number of employees: of employees: of employees: of employees: 19
  18. 18. Out of this scheme we can read that there are someproblems in the organisation of the Ministry of education:1. In the found regulation, the position of an assistant for high education has not been systematised, so that the Minister has no organisational possibilities to inspect the functioning and quality of teaching at higher and high education. There is a systematised position of the Republic inspector for high education, but it is not a professional but a legal aspect of inspection. This way one whole field of education has been out of the range of the Minister of education, when a professional-educational aspect of work is in question.2. The inspection is not organised according to hierarchy, so that inspectors were working after their own models, on the base of individual orders of the minister of education or his assistants, without having any working plans or a reasonable system. There is a systematised position of the chief inspector who was above all inspectors, but essentially he had no the competence of an organiser for other inspectors. He dealt only with higher and high education and was not competent for primary and secondary education.3. Inspectors are responsible for law regulations to be respected at schools, but inside the institutions of the Ministry of education they did not have a professional lawyer to turn to for some specific legal questions. The two lawyers employed had their own “specialisation” so that they could not work for the needs of inspection.4. The Republic Pedagogic Institute is an institution, which does not exist in the system of organisation in Serbia. Namely, the Republic Pedagogic Institute in the Republic of Srpska performs some functions that are carried out by more institutions in Serbia, like Pedagogic Institute, Psychological Institute, The service for development and improvement of education and so on. The role of this institution in the Republic of Srpska is poorly defined in normative documents. The law for primary and secondary 20
  19. 19. education, the task of the Republic Pedagogic Institute is to create teaching curricula and programmes, while the Regulations on operational-pedagogic supervision deter- mines this as a task of supervisors.5. The World Bank (WB) (PIU) has given project Imple- mentation Unit at the disposal of the Minister of education. The World Bank has financed this service. The main activity of this service is mediation in the implemen- tation of projects of donators in school constructions, providing the equipment and devices. Till the beginning of 1998, the work of PIU was far away from the Minister of education. The Minister only signed projects already agreed upon or the priority lists for schools to be rehabili- tated and reconstructed. Representatives of the World Bank sent a written protest against the work of this insti- tution to the Minister of education. After that the PIU has been reorganised so that this institution got its place in the system of organisation of the Ministry of education. Apart from the problem of systematisation, explainedherewith, there is a series of other organisational problems.- The Ministry of education has been moved from Pale to Banja Luka, and a need for more offices for professionals who are to execute the functions of the Ministry has become evident. The solution of this problem is in progress: offices in the detached unit in Banja Luka have been adapted, facilities of the ex Military headquarters are being rehabilitated so that the Ministry of education will have its seat where other Ministries are.- In order to organise this Ministry in a modern way, we have to employ new personnel, what brings the need for flats. The Government of RS will have to take adequate measures to solve this issue.- Modernisation of work of this Ministry demands modern equipment, computers, mobile telephones, Internet, a 21
  20. 20. better rolling stock, more efficient printing services and the similar. The conditions we found in the Ministry of education could not have met the needs of a small firm, let alone of one Ministry. Solving of these problems is in progress.- There was no good division of work between the Minister, his deputy and his assistant. These places exis- ted formally and all the functions were carried out by the Social Affairs Vice – president. One person can not perform all these assignments, so that many of them were not done, were done superficially, even wrongly. Measures for improvement the work organisation of the Ministry of education1. To make a new organisational scheme for an efficient functioning and a new systematisation of the Ministry of education.2. To provide the services of the Ministry of education materially.3. To develop programmes and efficient models of work in all sectors and services of the Ministry of education.4. To impose normative sanctions and open possibilities for a modern organization of the Ministry of education.5. To re-define and develop better the functions of the Republic Pedagogic Institute. Curricula / educational plans and programmes Some features of our educational plans and programmeshave been evident for decades: encyclopaedic approach, theyare not adapted for the age of students, they are traditional,out -of –date and completely centralised. Encyclopaedic approach is one of the most troublesomecharacteristics of our curricula. Too dense a timetable of thecontents or facts makes the students to repeat them only andthe teachers to compete with time in retelling them to 22
  21. 21. students. Most of the students are not capable of overcomingor reproducing such a number of information, so the teachersturn to work with 4 –5 best students in the class. Thereforemost of the students feel themselves unsuccessful, unable,depressed and incompetent. It is contrary to the nationalinterest in the field of education. Unacceptability of contents according to the age of stu-dents has been present in our schools for years. When a newscientific knowledge comes, we insert it into the curricula,without omitting any of the old issues. We only move suchcontents to lower age. It has become almost normal for ateacher to expect his first-grade students to behave as if theywere at school for a few years. Children’s need for playing,emotional warmth and the similar are pushed into the secondplan. In the whole Europe, children start school at the age ofsix; with us they start at the age of seven. Eight-year primaryschool with us lasts for ten years in Europe. The followingtable shows the age of starting school.Table 4: The beginning and duration of primary school in Europe Pre-school School Period of Junior Compulsory education start schooling high education in years schoolBelgium 3 6 6 3+3 12France 2 6 5 5 10Greece 3 6 6 3 9Ireland 3 6 6 3 9Luxembourg 3 6 6 3 9Portugal 3 6 6 3 9England 2 5 6 5 11Germany 2-3 6 4 5-6 9-10Austria 2-3 6 4 5 10Switzerland 3 6 4 5 9Serbia 3 7 (4 + 4) 8 - 8Republic of 3 7 (4 + 4) 8 - 8Srpska 23
  22. 22. To start school a year later is not only the problem of ageor the psychological maturity of a student but also, under ourconditions, the problem of organisational and pedagogicreadiness of school to accept children when they come toschool. If we moved the age to six, without a good prepa-ration of teaching staff and curricula, we would have educa-tion even less suitable for the age of student than it is today. In order to start education at the age of six, the followingpreparations have to be done in our schools:- to create appropriate plans and programmes- to train the teachers to follow new methods of work with children of that age- to make organisational, systematic and applied prepara- tions- to adapt classrooms for children of that age At the pre-school level of education, it is necessary todevelop models of teaching the contents from the first gradeof primary education, in order to unburden the syllabus inthe first grade and prepare students, through games, for amore serious encounters with curricula. Simple games, storyretelling, casual and gradual introduction of teaching num-bers and use of drawing equipment, light musical forms,through games and dances, will make this year of schoolvery favourable for children, and very useful for furtherwork in education. At the level of the seventh o and eighth grade, a row ofsubjects should be moved to higher level of education, sothat they are connected with professional education. As anexample, those who will continue education at a medicalschool should have a stronger syllabus in biology and lessgeneral contents than those who will continue education in alanguage school. 24
  23. 23. Traditionalism or out-of-date approach is a commonfeature of the present curricula. Some investigations haveshown that almost 80 % of the syllabus learned at schoolnever come to be used in life. By inertia, all educationalcontents are prescribed, with a minimal addition of new syl-labus, very few issues are ousted and new issues can hardlyforce their way in. As an example, syllabus for sociology hasbeen identical to those from 20 or 30 years ago, whilefuturistic issues are missing, as well as modern methodology,social psychology, modern sociological theories and thesimilar. Traditionalism is reflected in the application of ste-reotyped traditional methods and ways of work in education.Frontal method is prevailing, lecturing method also,verbalism, authority of a teacher... A complete centralisation of planning is an inheritedmodel of socialistic-realistic way of thinking. Namely, in acentralised system of planning, lower subjects expect every-thing to be planned “from above” and they will only realiseand, eventually, criticise those who planned. The curricula in the Republic of Srpska, Serbia andYugoslavia are completely centralised. Such a way ofplanning has proved to be non-functional. It has been shownthat a given syllabus can not meet various interests of certainregions and towns. In class schooling, the knowledge ofnature and society is spreading from narrower to widernative land. This results in a need that teachers do a part ofthe syllabus independently and creatively: students get infor-mation of their native town, the nearest mountain and thesimilar. This is illustrative enough to prove that our curriculacan not fully satisfy practical needs. Another problem of centralised or uniformed plans andprogrammes is their un-adaptability to a concrete group ofstudents, a concrete mentality or environment. It is some-times necessary that teachers develop small class groups or 25
  24. 24. individual projects with their students, which will accord thegiven cognitive style, interests of the class and the similar. Consequences of such centralised plans and programmesare manifold, we single out the following:- inappropriate syllabus concerning a concrete local and regional area- non-adaptability of lecturing to a cognitive style of students- minimised or prevented creativity of students and tea- chers- ignoring of individual aspirations and interests of students and students group. In developed western countries, a decentralised way ofplanning has been developed. Plans and programmes haveone centralised subject-contents core, and the rest of theprogramme is realised creatively and in relation with a con-crete area, respecting the interests of a class and a concretesituation. Through optional and free-chosen programmes,through thematic projects, and in other ways, 30 – 40 % ofthe programme is realised. The rest 60 – 70 % of theprogramme is realised as a constant core, but the method isfree. Such a decentralised aspect of educational contents isnot in practice in the Republic of Srpska and in the FederalRepublic of Yugoslavia, but practically, in the Republic ofSrpska, a certain aspect of decentralisation has occurred.This reflects in production of supplementary materials forthe third grade of the primary school, for example, for whicha “Supplementary textbook for natural history for the thirdgrade of the primary school” has been issued. In this text -book, the issues specific for the Republic of Srpska, localarea and the similar are dealt with. 26
  25. 25. Normative regulations The existing laws of primary and secondary schools, theLaw of higher education and the Law of University werebrought in 1993, and today are not applicable for a moderneducation. Common features of these regulations are:- they are not adapted to European patterns.- they are not in accordance with novelties in the educa- tional practice- they are inconsistent- the system of education is a formal and closed system. Non adaptability to European patterns is reflected in anumber of aspects:- some definitions on human rights and the right of children are missing- the relation between the central and local level of admini- strating the school has not been defined: state, munici- pality, school;- there are no determinations about decentralisation of educational plans and programmes;- forms for modernisation of the system have not been given;- vocational training and professional advancement of teachers has not been defined;- criteria for the election of principals have been badly worked out;- There is no proper treatment of talented and backward students. Discord with novelties in educational practice is evidentin the Laws of primary and secondary schools, in the Lawsof higher schools and Universities. As an example, Ministryof education, science and culture has been divided into twoministries and renamed as Ministry of education andMinistry of science and culture, while the old name for theseinstitutions is still in the Law. Further on, system of entrance 27
  26. 26. exams in secondary schools has achieved the level ofrealisation and has to be sanctioned, as done in France, butthis problematic has not been defined. There is a raw of other questions that are not considered byformal regulations of the laws, and are considerably presentin the practice. That is the question of school fee insecondary schools, at higher schools and faculties. Inconsistency can be recognised at all these laws. Anexample, Law of high schools and the Law of Universityhave completely different criteria for the election of teachersand assistants. It so happens that at the first year of a highschool, a high school teacher can conduct lessons, while thesame teacher can not be chosen to be a higher assistant at thefirst year of a faculty. Another example of illegal regulationof the Law of primary school is the article of the Law thatdeals with strike. If teachers are on strike, they have toconduct lessons which last thirty minutes to maintain “theminimum work process” since the primary school educationis of a special state /social/ interest. The same regulation isnot valid for secondary schools. And besides, this regulationof the Law of secondary schools is not in accordance withthe Law of strike. Some regulations are partially explained, which is also afeature of inconsistency: various payments done by students,the question of private schools, regulations for the founda-tion of schools, the tasks of school boards and administrativeorgans of schools and the similar. The consequences aremanifold. Some competencies have been doubled andconfused. Many principals took over the competencies ofschool boards, while some deans took over the competenciesof university councils. School fees were different so thatstudents of grammar schools paid ten times higher a fee thatthose in other towns of the same country. This has brought agreat dissatisfaction among students and their parents and 28
  27. 27. disappointment among teachers. This has generatedintolerance and discontent of citizens. New faculties wereirrationally and non-systematically open, as well as highschools and secondary schools. New educational profileswere offered in high schools. A great number of secondaryschools enrol one class of a profession. All this has createdsuch a school net that would be expensive for the mostdeveloped countries of the world. Formalism and closing of the system of education isreflected in a series of concrete aspects:- school plans and programmes are centralised and prescribed by the state institutions- all lectures are organised as class system in which classes last for 45 minutes. Classrooms are the only polygons of lecturing. Under such circumstances, children learn about vegetables, poultry, and bread- baking and about similar contents, in classrooms, instead of learning about it in the school garden, farmyard or a bakery. This is the result of school formalisation after Herbrat’s pattern.- Closing of schools is reflected in a very hard pass of students from lower to higher grades or a year of education in a shortened period of time. A talented student has small chances to finish two years of education in one year, simply because he has to attend the whole school programme and then take exams. Besides vertical, there is a problem of horizontal passage. If a student want to change a school or a profession, he is faced with many administrative obstacles. There are no standardised forms in normative regulations, there are many improvisations, private copying of forms, reselling and so on. Badly made forms have given possibilities for forgeries and bad copies, which usually damage students. The problem is present if a student wants to move from one entity to another.- The whole system of education is conceptualised differently than in Europe, so that our students can hardly 29
  28. 28. get their certificates ratified in European countries and continue education there. Out of the things mentioned herewith, it is obvious thatnormative regulation is a serious obstacle to modernisationof the system of education and a barrier in including this sys-tem into the schooling system of the European community. Measures for improvement of normative regulations in the system of education in RS Out-of-date, inconsistent and inflexible normative regula-tions can not serve the creation of a modern system of educa-tion, which would be a part of European, and the worldtrends. It is necessary to undertake a number of measures toimprove legal system in the system of education in theRepublic of Srpska.1. To analyse all laws and regulations concerning education, keep useful ones, eliminate the surplus and unnecessary, and insert new, needed regulations.2. Insert regulations on human rights and the rights of children.3. Define the competence in terms of centralised and decentralised managing of educational institutions: state, municipality, and school.4. Create possibilities in the law for decentralisation of the school plans and programmes.5. Create the forms for modernisation of educational system.6. Conceptualise and , through a democratic procedure, ac- cept Regulations for professional advancement of teachers.7. To define, more precisely, forms for election of principals at schools and deans at faculties.8. Create possibilities for a better treatment of talented and backward students. 30
  29. 29. 9. Name the institutions in a way that will not demand the change of law in case the name of an institution gets changed.10. Pass regulations for entrance exams, matriculation at all educational levels.11. To define all kinds of fees by passing a special regulations.12. To pass a law of higher schools and faculties and eliminate duality at that educational level.13. To oust rules about strike from the Law of the primary schools.14. To make a clear concept for opening and define standards for private schools.15. To define more precisely, the conditions for opening a school or a faculty.16. To define more precisely the work of all executive and administrative bodies in all educational institutions.17. To create a base for rationalisation of the system of education, for rationalisation of educational institutions net, enrolment policy and the policy of school finishing.18. To create possibilities for modernisation of teaching through normative regulations and to eliminate formalism and a blind attitude which have bad effects in lecturing.19. To pass regulations for all acts and forms which refer to school documentation and evidence.20. To create, by law, forms for application of European standards in the system of education. 31