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on Tue, January 22, 2013 at 09.20 pm
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Education Thematic Consultation 1 Page Summary - January 2013.pdf

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Mehdi Gurra from
Thu, February 21, 2013 at 11.02 am
Regarding the education, the ALSAR Foundation is especially focused in the issue of religious education. Based in a formerly communist country such as Albania, where the constitution two decades ago imposed an official atheism and forbade every religious belief, our foundation is of the opinion that actually religious education in schools would have a positive influence in the Albanian society and elsewhere for the following reasons:

1. It would prevent young people from becoming potential victims of extremism and/or terrorism by acquiring religious knowledge from unauthorized groups or individuals out of state and institutional control.

2. Religious education in schools wouldn’t require imposing a belief to pupils or students, but presenting them in the context of general culture and in a professional process of teaching the items of a belief which they would be free to accept or reject.

3. There is nothing wrong in learning about a religion or various religions and then deciding to agree or not to agree with it. But abandoning young people in ignorance on religious issues means depriving them from learning useful knowledge and thus providing them an incomplete education.

4. Atheism and/or agnosticism are to be considered as forms of a belief too. Imposing such a belief by stating that young people in a definite age are not able to choose through their own conscience a belief other than these two, cannot be considered part of a democratic education.

To have a better apprehension on the issue, the ALSAR Foundation would be interested to achieve research results on the social consequences of religious education in schools in democratic countries such as Austria, Turkey etc.

We would also be glad to contribute in this context, as we have already translated from Bosnian to Albanian language a number of curricular texts related to Islamic religious education. The translated and published materials are already approved by institutions in Bosnia-Herzegovina and we would like to have the necessary support to have them officially and institutionally approved also for use of Albanian pupils/students in Albania, Kosovo, Montenegro, Macedonia, and wherever Albanian Muslims are living. We hope for understanding and collaboration in the issue.

ALSAR Foundation – Albania
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