The latest Democratic School Open Day took place on October 17 in Niš and it was facilitated by the Elementary School Radoje Domanović. This particularly interesting and exciting event was one of the many different ways of celebrating democracy in the local communities of pilot schools participating in the project Fostering a Democratic School Culture, implemented by the Council of Europe in Serbia and in cooperation with our main partners from the Ministry of Education. This year, the Democratic School Open Day gathered the entire community - schools, local self-government, civil society organisations.
As it was intended, the citizens of Niš had the chance to see that the entire school lives according to the principles of togetherness, tolerance, friendship, and diversity. This was demonstrated by the impressive programme that the school prepared for the day, focusing on the celebration of diversity deeply nurtured by the school and involving other partner schools, teachers and, most importantly, children and parents. Focus of the day was on children, starting from the pre-schoolers and finishing with those who will be moving to the secondary schools next year, taking with them the values, beliefs, skills and attitudes that they will have acquired.
We were impressed by the number of people who support the school and its mission to promote the principles and the ideas to other schools and institutions, and to the entire community – local civil society organisations, representatives of local authorities, singers, writers, artists. Another proof of the remarkable work carried out by the school is the interest shown by the major TV stations covering the South of Serbia, which thoroughly reported on the event.
The event was concluded by a session led by the school principal and the school team that involved all the guests. As the principal put it, it was necessary to reflect on the day and to ensure everyone present was aware of the value the integration of the competences for democratic culture has for the school life and its impact on children, teachers and the entire community. What we witnessed in the school was good proof of the rightfulness of the principal’s statements and therefore we say: kudos to Niš!