In the Netherlands both state and denominational schools are fully financed by the government. This is the basis for the Dutch pillarised educational system, with separate schools (Protestant, Roman Catholic and state schools) divided along religious lines. Due to processes of secularisation and multiculturalism, the formal identity of schools in the pillarised educational system no longer represents the religious identity of teachers nor of pupils and their parents. There are different kinds of religious education in schools. How religious education in school takes shape is only partly related to the official (religious) identity of a certain school. Given the public discussions on the Dutch educational system and the role religion plays or should play in schools, it is important to question what the effects are of these different kinds of religious education in schools. On the basis of two empirical studies we conclude that it is not possible to point clearly to the effects of different kinds of religious education on pupils. The family background and the role religion plays in the pupil’s live cannot be ignored.
Stella El Bouayadi-van de Wetering, Siebren Miedema and Henk Vroom
Dihyatun Masqon Ahmad
This paper outlines the historical development of the pondok pesantren, a type of Islamic educational boarding school in Java. The main characteristic of this school is its distinct approach toward modernizing Islamic education by using the integrated system of non-formal and informal education of the pondok pesantren on the one hand and formal education on the other. The pondok pesantren consists of four elements. (1) The kiai is a spiritual and holistic leader and teacher who gives lectures to (2) the santri (students). (3) The Pondok is a dormitory where santri live and study under the guidance of the kiai and sometimes under the supervision of senior santri. (4) The mosque is present as a space for education, worship (ibadah), learning Islamic textbooks and conducting social activities. In recent decades the pondok pesantren has developed a new Islamic educational system with new instructional methods, especially the teaching of Arabic and English. Also, a new institutional system was introduced to replace the dominant ineffective traditional management by the kiai. This was achieved by making the new pesantran system a waqf (religious endowment) so it was no longer the property of the founders or their descendants.
Within the pluralistic character of society and the modern school, students are seeking a different kind of understanding about the relationship between their religious traditions and life. This affects Islamic religious education in many aspects, including its aims, its programs, and approach to teaching in the classroom. Recently, religious education has not been an activity of faith transfer but a matter of passing on new perspectives into the context in which the individual stands. Therefore, the teachers should strive to teach their students to live with the demands of plurality and modernity present in their world today. This paper will advance some insights on the methodological problem of communicating the Qur’anic text by introducing a communicative model of teaching in teacher training. The communicative model of teaching is a kind of reflection on the text of the Qur’an within the subject in its historical and contemporary contexts. It starts from the question: What is textual and what is contextual? This paper aims to present a communicative model of teaching, taking the Qur’anic concept of “people of the book” as an example.
Nabil Alsamaloty and Stella El Bouayadi-van de Wetering
This chapter deals with deviance and guidance of the youth and the influence of friends and modern media. After an overview of the main theories on deviance: Structural Functionalism, Symbolic Interactionis, and Conflict Theory, the authors summarize the research that Nabil Alsamaloty has conducted on deviance among Egyptian young people and possible explanations he found for this deviance. He concentrates mostly on the theories of Sutherland (criminal behavior is learned), the Strain Theory of Robert K. Merton (criminal behavior as a result of deprivation) and social and economic forces (extreme poverty). He also stresses, however, the undeniable influence of modern media (literature, television and film). In addition, he focuses on the lack of love, appraisal and guidance from adults and adult institutions (e.g. parents’ schools and teachers). The authors state that parents and institutes should invest more in sound religious education for the children and pupils to guide them the right way in society and that, despite what is claimed by Western politicians and thinkers, Islam is a religion that stimulates human rights and tolerance.
Hussein Bashir Mahmoud and Stella El Bouayadi-van de Wetering
This chapter gives an overview of religious education in Egypt. This is pre-dominantly Islamic, but there is also Christian religious education to serve the Christian minority. Education in Egypt is predominantly public, and religious education is compulsory. There is an Islamic and Christian variant of religious education for the Muslim and Christian pupils respectively. A quite extensive overview of the goals and content of Islamic religious education is added that shows that religious education in Egypt is both modern (it helps young people to recognize the Islam view of current ideas and issues and plays an active part in implementing human values, ethics, and culture) and traditional since it goes back to old Islamic sources and books. Tolerance among people of different religious groups is an important ethical value in the Egyptian Islamic education curriculum and is taught in the lessons.
Stella El Bouayadi-van de Wetering
This paper deals with the Islamic education of Muslim children at home and in the mosque. It focuses on the special educational situation of Muslim children in the Netherlands, most of whom grow up in migrant families with their own very specific Islamic cultural habits, that often differ a great deal from the culture and habits of the Dutch environment. These cultural differences and conflicts raise many questions for children as they are growing up. Muslim parents often do not know how to cope with these questions because their questions were not answered. Mosques could play a role in these situations, but unfortunately, even now, most mosques do not use the Dutch language in their communication with children, and they continue to convey Islamic knowledge in a traditional way. This gives the pupils little space for discussion and critical questions. The future will show how mosques will deal with this complex educational situation of Muslim children and youth that is very critical for Islamic education in the mosque.