The book is the first to bring to one place all relevant information on the system of Croatian language instruction outside of Croatia and has been jointly published by the Ministry and the University of Zagreb’s Faculty of Teacher Education. The volume was presented by Minister Željko Jovanović and the faculty’s dean Ivan Prskalo.
The Croatian Language Instruction Abroad handbook was presented at the Ministry of Science, Education and Sports on April 22nd. The book is the first to bring to one place all relevant information on the system of Croatian language instruction outside of Croatia and has been jointly published by the Ministry and the University of Zagreb’s Faculty of Teacher Education. The volume was presented by Minister Željko Jovanović and the faculty’s dean Ivan Prskalo.
Joining them to discuss this handbook, invaluable to teachers, students and specialists working in the field of Croatian language instruction and others interested in this field were the volume’s reviewer Dubravka Maleš and editors Ante Bežen and Milan Bošnjak.
“The Ministry of Science, Education and Sports attributes great importance to the education of children and young Croatian nationals with temporary or permanent residence abroad, and the affirmation of the Croatian language, literature and culture around the world and there are thus numerous Ministry activities directed at improving the knowledge of the Croatian language abroad, the most significant of which are the maintenance and development of the system of Croatian language instruction abroad and Croatian language instructorships at foreign institutions of higher education,” said Minister Jovanović, noting that there are currently thirty-three official exchange instructorships in twenty-two countries under the competence of the Ministry (Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, France, India, Italy, Canada, China, Hungary, Macedonia, Poland, Romania, Russia, the United States of America, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Ukraine, Great Britain) at which Croatian language instruction is attended by over 1,500 students. The system of Croatian language instruction abroad, for its part, covers about 6,800 pupils, with whom ninety-three teachers work in twenty countries.
“Croatian nationals and citizens of Croatian extraction living outside the homeland have become participants of other cultures, often their active exponents and initiators, but they have at the same time preserved their awareness of the need to preserve and nurture their Croatian identity, and Croatia therefore, as their country of origin, has, since it regained its independence, invested great efforts and significant financial means in assisting these efforts and developing the affiliation to Croatian culture,” Minister Jovanović said, adding that Croatian language instruction abroad does not aim to ghettoise children and youth.
“On the contrary,” he emphasised, “we feel that it is very important that they be an integral and active part of the societies in which they live, and at the same time that they possess an awareness of their Croatian identity.”
Minister Jovanović thanked the dean of the University of Zagreb’s Faculty of Teacher Education Ivan Prskalo, editors Ante Bežen and Milan Bošnjak and reviewer Dubravka Maleš on the efforts they have invested in compiling the handbook, which he said would make a significant contribution to Croatian language instruction abroad.