Hanna de Jong-Markus

How Cohesion Matters 4 81 Interest 1 connects to the idea of being called by God to educate children, especially into the Christian faith. Interest 2 conveys the idea that teachers can openly live out their own opinions, norms, and values and experience their school as a safe place. Interest 3 involves the cohesion among school, family, and church, as well as the cohesion within the same school for religious and pedagogical reasons. The basis of all those interests is a desire for cohesion, which the teachers experience when they can share their orthodox Protestant beliefs and practices in different environments and/or domains. The data reveal that this desire is influenced by religious, pedagogical, and formational factors. The religious influences deal with the person’s need to express his or her Christian faith in professional life, especially because teaching is about the formation of children. “Teachingforeternal salvation” isperceivedasahighresponsibility.Thepedagogical influences have to do with providing children with cohesive and safe surroundings for the sake of their well-being and the possibility to spend time learning the Christian tradition. Children should first root themselves in the Christian tradition before they are resilient and can enter into dialogues with religious others. Sometimes, teachers interpret themselves as pedagogical professionals in Christian socialization. The formational influences mean that teachers feel themselves incapable of working at schools other than OPPSs. Teachers talked about lacking experiences with religious others. Furthermore, when they considered whether they would ever start to work at another school, they mentioned that they first should develop their professionalism and faith while working at an OPPS, before they could think about working elsewhere (cf. Interest 2). Meanwhile, they did mention that working at a school where pupils do not have Christian backgrounds could be a special answer to the calling of introducing children in the Christian faith (cf. Interest 1). In addition to the teachers’ appreciation of the mono-religious characteristic of the OPPS, they also mentioned that the absence of religious others can have some disadvantages. It might reduce experiences in which children learn to defend or deepen their faith, and it might lead to pupils criticizing each other on small issues. It was noted that cohesion between the religious climate of the school and the family will not be met when pupils without an orthodox Protestant background visit OPPSs with open pupil enrollment. In this regard, teachers seemed to prioritize the religious desire for Christian socialization (Interest 1) over the cohesion of pedagogical environments (Interest 3). Furthermore, we see that the teachers’ ideas about choosing an OPPS are comparable with those of the parents: Both stress the school’s religious dimension and, in the case of orthodox Protestant parents, highlight the connection between the religious socialization at home and at school. However, among the teachers, the mono-religious characteristic is