Hanna de Jong-Markus

How Cohesion Matters 4 69 schools are comparable to the mission statements of schools registered as OPPSs. Therefore, the total number of OPPSs is estimated to be at least 5% of all primary schools (De Muynck et al., 2014; DUO, 2016). Orthodox Protestants in the Netherlands form a modest subculture within Dutch society, for example, by having their own newspapers and political parties (cf. Stoffels, 1995). However, this subculture is not as closed as it was in earlier times. A teacher in our study clarified this: “The world changed. When I was young, everything was far more pillarized and stances were not questioned. … Now the world enters the school [and daily life] from all sides.” (cf. Pons-de Wit, 2017) In the mission statements of OPPSs, references to the Bible and the Reformed or Calvinist faith claims (the so-calledThree Forms of Unity) are central. TheOPPSs areoften connected with local religious communities, although they can only be founded by associations of individual parents and not by ecclesiastical organizations (DeMuynck, 2008; DeWolff et al., 2002; Dijkstra & Miedema, 2003). Teachers in OPPSs are practicing members of orthodox Protestant churches. Some OPPSs demand this of the pupils as well, while other OPPSs are open to children of all backgrounds (De Muynck et al., 2014; De Wolff et al., 2003). In our study, teachers from 15 OPPSs were involved, and at least seven of these schools applied such an admission requirement for their pupils. In religious education, reading the Bible, praying, and singing are important daily practices, as is doctrinal teaching in the higher level classes (De Muynck et al., 2014). Furthermore, teachers are likely to make connections between their religious beliefs and the curriculum and pedagogy (De Muynck, 2008; De Wolff, 2000). Unlike most other Protestant schools (“mainline Protestant schools”) which can be described by the multireligious or interreligious model, OPPSs deal with religious plurality in terms of the mono-religious model (Sterkens, 2001). This means that they have “a socio-cultural context characterized by the dominance of a specific religious tradition; a pedagogic aim, namely, the internalization of that tradition; and a normative basis, being the dominant religious tradition’s claim to absolute truth” (Sterkens, 2001, p. 49). This truth claim is often interpreted as exclusivistic, i.e., the idea of salvation only exists for those who explicitly accept Jesus Christ as Savior (Moyaert, 2011; Sterkens, 2001). 4.3 Parents’ Motives for Choosing an Orthodox Protestant School There has been very little research on why teachers choose to work at OPPSs instead of mainline Protestant or other schools. However, studies about the school choice of parents are performed regularly in this field. Because teachers and parents together are seen