Hanna de Jong-Markus

Summary 157 diversity in society and the contributions of mono-religious education. These studies at least show that not only does external religious diversity, (i.e., the different religions and world views manifested within society) play a role, but that religious differences also emerge within schools, for example, due to different church denominational positions. Furthermore, it is interesting that internal diversity—which has increased within OPPSs—is seen as a central feature of Islamic education in the Netherlands. To gain a better understanding of how religious diversity is handled in schools with monoreligious characteristics, it is relevant to focus on teachers’ thinking and acting since teachers are the ones who ultimately realise education and teachers are perceived to be potential agents of social change. Teachers are expected to make intentional choices and decisions at work. It is important for them to have or to build a normative framework upon which to base their choices. In this study, this issue is further focused on what this could mean for teacher education, as it is the responsibility of teacher education programmes to prepare teachers to carry out their profession. Furthermore, the design and quality of the curriculum in preservice teacher education programmes are, among other things, seen as important areas of focus for strengthening the quality of citizenship education in the Netherlands. When it is about future teachers in OPPSs, specific questions as to how they could best be educated in teacher programmes can arise, since these future teachers may have fewer or different experiences around religious diversity. There may also be tensions between their religious beliefs and values and how citizenship is conceived of in the mainstream. These aspects are very relevant since in teaching citizenship teachers’ own beliefs, values and experiences play a larger role than in other subject areas. In order to fill the current gap of knowledge about these issues, an explorative study has been conducted. The guiding central research question for this study is: How do teachers in orthodox Protestant primary schools professionally reconcile the context of a religiously diverse society and the mono-religious characteristics of their schools, and what are the implications for preservice teacher education? Several sub-questions have been formulated, each contributing to mapping out an aspect contained in the central research question. The sub-questions are: 1. What does religious tolerance as an educational goal mean, and how can the tensions that might emerge in orthodox Protestant primary schools around that goal be understood from a theoretical perspective? (Chapter 3) 2. Is the mono-religious school characteristic important for teachers working at Dutch orthodox Protestant primary schools, and what are the reasons for this? (Chapter 4)