NEWS Religious pluralism, the challenge of the Ministry of Education

ada-trevesBy Pagine Ebraiche Staff

Journalist, working in the newsroom of the Union of the Jewish Communities of Italy (UCEI), expert in school and education issues, coordinator of DafDaf, the Jewish magazine for kids, Ada Treves is one of the nine members of the new Commission for religious pluralism in public schools. An important recognition of the work of the information department, that in the last years has produces innovative and authoritative instruments.

The importance of study and education, the attention to the changes taking place in society and the enhancement of minorities. The knowledge of the others, the interest in the interaction between different cultures and traditions. And the future. These are some of the ideas that are particularly important for the information department since the beginning, seven years ago. Specific projects like DafDaf and the weekly newsletter melamed, devoted to schools, education and pedagogical matters are proofs of an interest and of a commitment that has now been recognized by the Ministry of Education, University and Research.

The Minister, Stefania Giannini, made the announcement in the beginning of May during the conference “Europe and European culture. Religions as education systems”, sponsored by UCEI, by the Jewish Community of Rome, La Sapienza University and the Jewish Centre Pitigliani: “In the Ministry I have established a commission on religious pluralism in which I have appointed no representatives of communities of faith, but experts from different fields – seven out of nine are women – to provide proposals and to give voice to initiatives like this one”. Already in the appointing decree the ministry recognizes that the social, cultural and economic factors that characterize society have determined a change in the approach and a transformation of the education system, processes that require a redefinition of the concepts of citizenship, legality and democracy.

Italian schools and universities are places where to meet and socialize, recognized as fundamental for a real perception of the values of solidarity, democracy, respect for the rules and for the rights of the others. And for these reasons for the first time it was formed a commission – coordinated by Alberto Melloni, director of the Foundation for religious sciences in Bologna, university professor and advisor to the Ministry of Education – which will offer guidelines and suggestions directly to the Minister, regarding legislative acts and decrees to combat discrimination, with the aim of educating to respect the constitutional principles of freedom and equality.