On February 29, EUROCLIO Network Coordinator Jaco Stoop participated in a round table discussion in Belgrade, Serbia, organized by Education for the 21st Century. The round table focused on “Fostering Human Rights Through Deconstruction of Stereotypes in Education, Culture and Media”. The round table was attended by representatives of NGOs, governmental organizations and educators in the field of education, culture and media from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Serbia and Slovenia. Mr. Cartwright from the Council of Europe’s office in Serbia delivered some opening remarks.
The goal of the first of two round table sessions, funded by the German Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the context of Serbia-EU negotiations, was to share experiences from the field in fighting stereotypes and formulate recommendations on how to deal with stereotypes. EUROCLIO was invited to present the Manifesto on High Quality History, Heritage and Citizenship Education and the Helsingor Declaration. In addition, EUROCLIO’s experience in the Balkans as well as in the rest of Europe with developing educational resources that fight stereotypes was mentioned.
Participants to the round table stressed the need to directly address policy makers and politicians, and to actively engage them in debates about fighting stereotypes. Media representatives noted that a code of conduct is being developed, and that media organizations need to supervise themselves better. As to education, it was said that although curriculum reform is taking place, implementation of new educational resources is also necessary. Besides that, next to teachers and students, parents of students also have to be addressed.
In May, the concluding round table will take place, after which recommendations will be formulated.