zasto i kako

13 October 2018, Belgrade

The conference "Why and how about gender-based violence in secondary school" marked the end of cooperation with teachers and professional associates of secondary schools who participated in the activities of the project "Zero Tolerance on Gender-Based Violence". The conference brought together over 70 representatives of schools, activists from local partner organizations and AWC associates who supported the implementation of activities over the past two years.

The topics of the conference were the improvement of the prevention of gender-based violence in high school, the effective response of schools to specific cases of violence and the development of a school environment that will clearly show that violence is unacceptable.

The participants had the opportunity to consider the issue of gender-based violence in the context of new learning programs in elementary and secondary schools, to gain insight into examples of inclusion of gender perspectives in classes of Serbian language and literature, as well as in programs and interventions aimed at creating a general culture of intolerance towards gender-based violence in high school.

As part of the discussion in smaller groups, participants discussed the opportunities and challenges of building an environment in secondary schools that clearly show that gender-based, as well as other forms of violence, is unacceptable. In particular, the following factors were discussed: 1) an environment that ensures that the school is a safe and supportive place for the stay and development of young people; 2) preventive activities integrated into curricula; 3) teachers represent a model of non-discriminatory and non-violent behavior; 4) planning based on systematic monitoring and needs assessment; 5) appropriate measures in particular cases when violence occurs (or is suspected to have happened); 6) the relationship of trust and mutual respect between teachers and pupils in addressing situations of gender-based and domestic violence. The teachers concluded that the prevention of violence requires: a) continuous and systematic work through teaching and extracurricular activities aimed at changing the value system; b) cooperation with all local actors; c) education of teaching staff and parents; d) providing materials for work with pupils; e) a clear approach by the collective regarding the unacceptability of violence.

Over 800 representatives from 32 secondary schools were involved in the accredited seminars and professional meetings that were realized during the project. In the framework of their cooperation within the project, the analysis of secondary school curricula was carried out from the perspective of the possibility of including the topic of gender-based and domestic violence and gender equality, a manual with specific examples of classes / activities for work with young people, colleagues and parents, as well as a collection of professional texts with the aim of more effective responses of secondary schools to cases of gender-based and domestic violence.