Lillehammer-Bujanovac Schools Cooperation

Strengthening social competences and preventing violence in schools

Lillehammer Municipality and Nansen Dialogue Centre Serbia joint project
Project website: http://www.lillehammer-bujanovac.net/

Baseline

Schools in Bujanovac municipality are still separated, with facilities only for Albanian or only for Serbian school. Roma children attend Serbian schools in most of the cases. The school buildings are situated in the parts of municipality mostly populated by one of the ethnic communities. This situation adds to ethnic divisions, creating inaccurate images about “the others”, since young generations learn only about their own community. In that way, communities continue to live separately instead of having meaningful communication about the issues of concern to all in this small geographical area.

Project goal

To contribute to the inter-ethnic cooperation by organising professional trainings for multi-ethnic groups of teachers, principals and school counselors, as well as to institutionalize positive changes within educational system by investing efforts in coordinating cooperation between educational institutions (schools and the Ministry of Education) and with the local authorities' representatives.

Achievements from the previous phase


Mediators' clubs are operational in 2 primary schools. During the school year 2008/2009 teachers and peer mediators resolved some serious conflicts in both schools. Examples: In Branko Radičević primary school, the conflict between 2 classes that lasted for several years was resolved after several mediation sessions. In Naim Frasheri primary school, the conflict in connection to the celebration of the Graduation Day was successfully resolved. Teachers, pupils, principal and the school pedagogue participated in the mediation process.

Target groups:


  • Teachers, principals and parents from Bujanovac town primary schools; Teachers mediators from the town will be consultants to colleagues in village schools;
  • Teachers, principals and parents from Levosoje and Veliki Trnovac village schools. Teachers and principals will pass the skills on to pupils and colleagues;
  • Pupils from all schools will actively participate in extra curricular activities and gain a) peer mediator skills, b) social compentence skills;
  • Ministry of Education representatives: counselors working in local departments and counselors working at national level;
  • Bujanovac municipality representatives will provide institutional support.


Activities

28/09/2010 Teachers and pupils (5th-7th grade) from Levosoje, Vuk Karadžić primary school, paid a visit to the mediators’ club at Naim Frasheri primary school in Bujanovac. Teachers-mediators offered the support in the establishment of the mediators’ club in the school in Levosoje. Multi-ethnic group of pupils talked about peer mediation.

7-9/10/ 2010 Seminar Mediators’ skills for teachers preparing for the role of mediator, from Levosoje and Veliki Trnovac held in Vrnjačka Banja.

18-21/11/2010 Second seminar Preparing mediation sessions and choosing peer mediators for techers-mediators from primary schools from Levosoje and Veliki Trnovac will be held in Vrnjačka Banja.