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Parental needs for Islamic kindergarten

Melita Zukić (2019) Parental needs for Islamic kindergarten. MSc thesis.

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    Parents have the right to choose a program of preschool education for their child in a public or a private kindergarten. They can choose among the programs which are based on the Curriculum for kindergartens and the other educational programs. In Slovenia, there are some private kindergartens among which there are also kindergartens with religious contents. They are Catholic kindergartens and kindergartens which function according to special educational principles (e.g. Montessori Pedagogy or Waldorf education). With regards to the fact that there are more and more members of the Islamic religion and there is not an Islamic kindergarten in Slovenia, the purpose of the master’s thesis was to research the needs of parents for the establishment of such a kindergarten. I was ascertaining what obstacles parents of Islamic religion face in including preschool children in Slovenian kindergartens. I also researched how they experience kindergartens (from the perspective of the preservation of the religious identity of their children and potential discrimination) and what needs they express in connection with their faith and possibility that their preschool children would practice the same. I used a combination of qualitative and quantitative research. I gained the data by means of an online questionnaire and two in-depth (individual) interviews. The members of the Islamic religion, respectively the parents of preschool children and the parents of those children who were enrolled in the kindergarten in the time period from 2013-2018, were invited to participate. I analyzed 68 questionnaires and 2 interviews. The research showed the incompatibility between the offer/programs of Slovenian kindergartens and religious needs of the parents. We ascertained that most of the parents choose the strategy of retreat when activities which are not in accordance with their religion (e.g. celebrating the Christian holidays) are performed in the kindergarten. With regards to their religious needs, we can conclude that concealment of them prevails. The exception is a religious need for special nutrition. Most of the parents point out this need in the kindergarten. However, they depend on the goodwill of the management regarding the special nutrition. When reading scientific literature, we realized that in the countries where they started to respect the religious needs of the parents of Islamic religion (or where they started to perform Islamic religious contents) the demand of private Islamic institutions decreased. The parents who participated in our research did not state the desire to perform special religious contents. They wish, however, that they would be enrolled in kindergartens where their religious needs would be considered. They say that there should be more talk about religious diversity on the concrete level (e.g. that children with Islamic background do not celebrate their birthdays, Christmas, etc.) With regards to that that parents are more prone to the strategy of including their children in public kindergartens, a manual for public kindergartens would have to be prepared at the beginning. The latter would offer a few suggestions for the work with Islamic families. In the long-term, we would have to strive for the government, Islamic communities, organizations, and the societies respond to the needs of parents and change the legislation (mostly with regards to nutrition in educational institutions).

    Item Type: Thesis (MSc thesis)
    Keywords: Islam, Muslims in Slovenia, parents’ needs, Islamic kindergarten
    Number of Pages: 88
    Language of Content: Slovenian
    Mentor / Comentors:
    Mentor / ComentorsIDFunction
    doc. dr. Nadica TurnšekMentor
    Link to COBISS: https://plus.si.cobiss.net/opac7/bib/peflj/12653897
    Institution: University of Ljubljana
    Department: Faculty of Education
    Item ID: 6066
    Date Deposited: 25 Oct 2019 10:54
    Last Modified: 25 Oct 2019 10:54
    URI: http://pefprints.pef.uni-lj.si/id/eprint/6066

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