SLOVENE SCHOOL SYSTEM
Osnovna šola Dornberk is a small primary school that is named after the town where it is situated. The school is quite small. Children start school at the age of 6, and they attend school for 9 years. The number of pupils is increasing. In this school year it is being attended by 254 pupils from the 1st to the 9th grade in Dornberk, and there are 50 pupils in the branch school in Prvačina from the 1st to the 4th grade – from the age of 6 to the age of 9, together 304 pupils. There are quite a few students with learning disabilities, students from lower socio-economic status families and disadvantaged environments. There are also two kindergartens that are part of our school. There are around 120 children in the Dornberk and Prvačina unit together.
In our school we learn the following subjects: English, Slovene, Domestic science, Maths, Science, Geography, History, Biology, Chemistry, P.E., Design and technology, Music, Art, Physics. We can also choose a variety of non-compulsory subjects, such as Italian, additional P.E. (basketball, football…), Computer science, Television and media and so on. We have got our own school library and a big gym.
There is a big number of students interested in the learning of the Italian language, especially because we live next to the Italian border, and knowing the language can open new doors and opportunities in their later life. Students also get the opportunity to explore Italy and improve the language through various school trips organized by our Italian teacher. During these trips they learn about Italian heritage, culture and historical events.
Our teachers are quite active in various fields. We have a school choir, Slovene and English acting classes, a dance group, and various other extra-curricular activities. We have been involved in many national projects, such as We are the Planet, where students learnt about the importance of taking care of our environment. Our school is also known for cooperating in various humanitarian projects and projects dealing with human rights. We cooperate closely with the local Old people’s home. Another important project is mediation. We teach students and train them to become mentors themselves and help other students how to solve problems in a non—violent manner; by discussing and explaining their points of view and speaking about their problems openly.
We were also involved in two projects connected with ICT, a national project called SUK and an international project called LOT. The aim was to teach students how to use ICT when communicating with other schools taking part in the project.
Our school is strongly linked to the village history. Collaborating with local communities we are establishing The Alexandrian women footpath, which will be put on the map by using geo-caching tool.
As our school is quite small, we may not have been involved in EU supported international projects before, but that is partly because we chose to put an emphasis on creating a strong relationship between students, teachers and parents. A smaller number of students means knowing each student as an individual and focusing on his needs and strengths. The school psychologist is an expert in autogenic training, so she teaches students different techniques for diminishing stress levels, especially before test papers and during exam periods.
We say that our school is home to knowledge and happiness, because besides the compulsory lessons we offer many other activities.