5. Arts and cultural education
Last update: December, 2014
The institutions of professional education and training are administratively separated from the rest of the cultural and arts administration because they are within the responsibility of three educational departments, The Pre-School and Basic Education Directorate responsible for pre-school education, primary education, music education and programmes for the education of children with special needs; The Secondary, Higher Vocational and Adult Education Directorate responsible for secondary education, higher vocational education and adult education; and The Higher Education and Science Directorate responsible among others also for higher education. However, there is a separate section for cultural education within the Creativity Directorate due to the long tradition of support from the cultural budget for programmes / projects of art schools, student artistic activity, scholarships for professional training and education of young artists etc.
The diverse opportunities for professional education and training in different fields of arts and heritage have been developed. Various formal and informal programmes, courses and workshops are presented as well as their organisers and producers (private and public).
The three academies of arts are the Academy of Fine Arts, the Academy of Music and the Academy of Theatre, Radio, Film and Television (see also chapter 2.9). Some programmes are also run at the Faculty of Arts, such as Library and Information Science, Book Studies, History of Arts and Musicology and some others. Courses on fashion and design are organised by the Faculty of Natural Science and Technology. There are also some independent institutions of higher education and colleges that offer education in fields such as multimedia, photography, interior design, fashion and others.
Slovenia has a long tradition of public music schools, which educate pupils under the music and ballet programme at basic level. As well as 53 public schools, there are also more than ten publicly funded private music schools. Four general upper secondary schools (gimnazija) that are specialised in arts, offer a wide range of programmes - music, dance, visual arts and theatre to suit special interests and provide specialised knowledge needed for further studies of arts. Similarly the programme of the Ljubljana Music and Ballet Conservatory is geared towards the Baccalaureate and further university education.
As far as the developments of the relationship between arts and education are concerned the National Programme for Culture 2008-2011 identified the following set of specific objectives:
- to organise care for the programmes for children and youth offered by cultural institutions in all fields of culture, and the accessibility and popularisation of culture among young people;
- cultural education as a cross-curricular content and dimension;
- support for further professional training in cultural education of the professional workers in education and additional training of the experts and artists who prepare projects and programmes for children and youth in kindergartens and schools;
- preparation of an Action Plan of Cooperation and setting up of a network of participating partners, educational, and cultural institutions in the field of cultural education; and
- to ensure, in particular, availability of information on quality cultural goods (offers) for children and youth within the framework of the national cultural portal.
According to the summary of the current National Programme for culture 2014-2017, the priority in the field of cultural and art education is to be open to long-term evolution and provide top-quality cultural production. Recommendations will be prepared for quality, diversified and accessible cultural and art educational programmes in all areas of culture for different target groups, for providing cultural and art education in the form of life-long learning, with an emphasis on programmes that include older people or where providers are the elderly (organisations of older people in cooperation with cultural institutions) and which ensure inter-generational dialogue in different areas of culture; training for professionals in the field of art and cultural education, and the development and promotion of the reading culture.
The conceptual part of the National Guidelines for Arts and Cultural Education in the Field of Education (the importance and purpose of arts and cultural education in education, fields of art, and objectives and principles) was revised and debated by the Council of Experts for General Education of the Republic of Slovenia in May 2009. Within the operational follow up, a textbook with study cases from arts and cultural practice was published in 2011 (for teachers, headmasters, cultural institutions and others to use in everyday education practice); a programme for regional training of teachers to raise the quality of the teaching in arts and culture education has started and the development of a network of so called coordinators for arts and culture in schools is on its way.
The Ministry of Education, Science and Sport together with the Ministry of Culture jointly organise the Cultural Bazaar http://en.kulturnibazar.si/, an event that takes place in the biggest cultural centre in Slovenia, Cankarjev dom, every year from 2009 on with the aim:
- to offer information on quality projects and programmes, provided by cultural institutions for children and youth;
- to encourage cooperation and partnerships between cultural institutions, preschool institutions, basic and upper-secondary schools as well as partnerships between cultural institutions;
- to enhance awareness about the significance of culture and the arts in education as well as society at large; and
- to inform the public on the positive benefits of quality arts and cultural education for children and youth or preschool institutions and schools.
Each year, the organisers produce a catalogue of cultural education programmes and projects and maintain a special website with data on all of the cultural programmes for children and young people. It also runs the programme "Growing with books", which means that every pupil in the seventh year of elementary school receives one literary book.
Last update: December, 2014
In 2007, the Ministry of Education and Sport in cooperation with the National Education Institute and the Ministry of Culture adopted the following aims:
- to increase awareness about the role of cultural education in the education system;
- to raise the level of cultural literacy; and
- to establish links between the education and culture sector.
Aims specified in the Elementary School Act ( Official Gazette No 12/96, 33/97, 59/01, 71/04, 23/05, 53/05, 70/05- UPB2 60/06, 63/06 - corr. 81/06 - UPB3, 102/07, 107/10, 87/11, 40/12 – ZUJF and (63/13) for the whole curriculum include cultural and creative aims. The compulsory school subjects are determined by the law. But, schools have a statutory duty to offer a list of subjects as options pupils must choose in the higher grades (in Years 7-9). Schools are autonomous only to some extent in the selection of optional subjects. There is a statutory requirement that a certain number of social sciences / humanistic subjects and natural sciences / technical subjects, a second foreign language, non-confessional religious education and rhetoric lessons must be available. Usually, the schools offer a much more extensive selection of optional subjects with cultural contents.
Slovenia is among those countries that encourage cross-curricular links between the arts and all other subjects as part of the aims for the whole curriculum.
The subjects that are included in the curriculum are:
- Visual arts – as a separate compulsory subject;
- Music – as a separate compulsory subject; and offered also through the parallel system of music schools;
- Drama – included in the home language (compulsory subject); and offered also as an optional subject;
- Dance - included in physical education (compulsory subject); and offered also through the parallel system of music and ballet schools;
- Media arts – as an optional subject; and as cross-curricular contents; and as didactical means;
- Crafts included in technologies (compulsory subject); and offered also as an optional subject;
- Other – please specify: cultural heritage included in history.
Table 24: Weekly timetable of the 9-year compulsory school (2007/08), arts school subjects in compulsory core curriculum subjects (compulsory for all pupils)
|Subject / No. of lessons per week||1.r.||2.r.||3.r.||4.r.||5.r.||6.r.||7.r.||8.r.||9.r.||Total No. of lessons per subject|
Source: Ministry of Education, Science and Sport,
The curriculum also prescribes among activity days the number of days of culture; in the first three years of the 9 year basic school cyle, there are 4 days per year, and 3 days per year in all other classes. Time, design and cultural activities are left to the autonomous choice of each school, but it must be planned in advance of the annual work plan. Usually a visit is organised to performances, exhibitions, museums, concerts, cultural workshops, celebrations, etc.
The extended curriculum of basic school comprises – among others – extra-curricular activities and cultural activities in after-school education and care. The most popular among extra-curricular activities are various cultural activities. In the framework of after-school classes, which must be provided for pupils from 1st to 6th class, the cultural activities are planned autonomously by schools in their annual work plan. Furthermore, the school must plan the work of the school library, and collaboration with the institutions in wider environment, such as higher education institutions, research institutions, cultural institutions, etc.
The Ministry for Education, Science and Sports finances 6 hours per week of choral activity in all nine-form primary schools; they are approved as regular working hours of the teacher, but for the children this is an activity of interest. A school has to organise a one-voice choir in the first triad and a two or three-voice choir in the second and third triads. In secondary schools, the choirs are considered an activity of interest which is financed by the Ministry upon a contract of 4 hours per week. In secondary schools there are few choirs; mostly they are mixed or girls' ensembles.
The arts school subjects at upper-secondary level have been revised for the school year 2008/09. A proposal for integration of a text, specifying the role of culture education in the chapter "Cross curricular links" has been agreed. Special attention is placed on the cultural content in pre-elementary education (nursery, kindergarten), in school curricula and in the teaching programmes of cultural institutions. One of the main goals is to link cultural and educational sub-systems and to re-establish mechanisms for a systematic and organised network of both. "Cultural days" continue as part of schools' extra-curricular programmes.
Last update: December, 2014
Tertiary arts education falls under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Education, Science and Sport.
The major problems lie within higher education, as there is still a lack of some study courses for important cultural professions. There is a special question over how to ensure that priority support is given to programmes and projects that can make up for the lack of professional training in the field of culture. Education for professionals that directly co-operate in the maintenance and restoration of cultural heritage do not exist in the present educational system. This is true for higher education and for secondary schools. Education, with some exception in the field of restoration, is only provided through non-institutional training opportunities whereby professionals work under mentors, and take part in special courses, seminars, workshops and additional education abroad. A professional programme for carving and restoration of wooden objects was also introduced at secondary school level. Museology is not, at the present moment, an independent field of study, but only a subject in some Departments of the Faculty of Arts. The same is true for the study of conservation. There are only some possibilities to take a course at post-graduate level in some Faculties. The Faculty of Arts introduced in 2009 an interdisciplinary doctoral study on conservation, so called ‘heritology’, in collaboration with the departments of archaeology, ethnology and art history. A better situation exists in the field of library and publishing where and independent department within the Faculty of Arts was established in 1987. The Department of Library and Information Science and Book Studies offers undergraduate programmes leading to a BLib degree and postgraduate research programmes. Masters studies consist of three programmes on Librarianship, Information Science and Publishing Studies. A doctorate programme on Information Science is available as an interdisciplinary study programme conducted between the Faculty of Arts and the Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Ljubljana.
Last update: December, 2014
The Republic of Slovenia Public Fund for Cultural Activities (JSKD) is an important non-profit governmental institution for culture and art, with experts at its headquarters in the capital city Ljubljana and 59 local offices in all major urban centres in Slovenia. It is entrusted to support amateur cultural societies and their unions (see also chapter 6.4). It is functioning primarily as a focal point for informal education in culture and backs cultural projects. It prepares seminars for the members of various cultural groups, for mentors and school teachers as well as amateurs interested in art.
Arts education is also provided on an institutional basis "outside of school hours" by music schools but they are considered as a part of the education system. In search of new audiences (and from that to legitimise public funding) cultural institutions considerably developed their education programmes, especially for children and young people. The rapidly expanding programmes for educational purposes have become part of new marketing strategies especially of museums, followed by cultural centres, concert halls and theatres. For example, a new public interest in supporting the creativity and aesthetic capacity of young people led in to the creation of a special programme strand dedicated to cultural education in the biggest cultural centre in Slovenia, Cankarjev dom (see also: http://www.cd-cc.si/default.cfm?Jezik=En&Kat=0207).
On the initiative of the Ministry of Education, Science, Culture and Sports, the Ljubljana City Library and the Educational Section within the Slovenian Museum Community designed a national project entitled Slovenian Library-Museum MEGA Quiz, which is based on the establishment of a partnership between general libraries, museums and basic schools. The Quiz, which has now been carried out for the fifth year, is intended for pupils aged from 9 to 15 years. The objectives of the Quiz are: learning about cultural heritage, information literacy, reading, and virtual and actual visits to cultural institutions (see: http://www.mklj.si/eng/index.php/partnerships/mega-quiz).
Last update: December, 2014
A problem which has arisen in the last couple of years is the lack of education for cultural managers in the fields of art and cultural heritage. At the moment, there are no under-graduate or post-graduate programmes in this field. Some subjects are taught at the Faculty of Social Sciences and in all three Art Academies.