Swiss schools are diverse. In 2018/19, children and young people of foreign nationality made up an average of 27% for the whole of Switzerland. The proportion of students with a migration background is even higher, on average over 50%. This diversity also brings challenges. Alongside the workplace, schools are one of the most heavily affected areas of life when it comes to racism and discrimination, as a current report by the Federal Office for Combating Racism (FRB) shows.
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Problem We Are Trying to Solve
Dealing with racist incidents often proves to be problematic for school authorities because there is a lack of adequate intervention concepts. However, students also face challenges with racism and anti-Semitism, as they lack the knowledge and skills to recognize these issues in everyday school life and to react to them.
In addition to slurs in the schoolyard and in the classroom, the class chats on WhatsApp, in which racist and anti-Semitic remarks are made repeadetly, are problematic.
How We Are Going To Do It
In spring 2022, the GRA is holding a two-day workshop for students from German-Swiss high schools. On the first day of the workshop, the students receive a theoretical introduction to the topics of racism and anti-Semitism, they learn to think about the topics critically and self-reflectively. With the help of interactive exercises and discussion groups, they will gain an insight into the mechanisms of racism and anti-Semitism and learn to deal with them in a solution-oriented manner. On the second day of the workshop, the students work with their classmates on their own project with which they can pass on the newly acquired knowledge to their own schools.
On the one hand, the project imparts knowledge to better recognize racism and anti-Semitism in everyday (school) life. On the other hand, the students learn strategies to react appropriately in individual cases and to demonstrate moral courage both online and offline.
The target group of this project are German-Swiss high school students who will start the 2nd or 3rd grade in autumn 2021 (short-term high school). Society as a whole benefits in order to promote integration and prevent racist, anti-Semitic ideas.
Long Term Impact
As part of the training, the participants develop their own internal school project that addresses the issue of racism and anti-Semitism. Here the project pursues the pedagogical approach of peer education in that what is learned is passed on to peers on an equal footing. Through the project, the participants learn to give positive impulses for a respectful coexistence in everyday (school) life and to intervene in racially motivated conflicts in the schools on a low-threshold basis. This not only benefits the project participants, but the entire school building. In the long term, the participating students act as a contact point for their peers in their schools should there be racist incidents at the school.
What We Need To Do
The GRA Foundation against Racism and Anti-Semitism relies on third-party funding to carry out this project. You are welcome to give us your donation so that we can continue driving at full speed.
Instead of material gifts, give someone a Copalana gift card, which can be redeemed for important charitable projects so that our project can continue to be supported.