Diversity Becomes a Concern

Kompas, page 11

Awareness of diversity is the concern of educators in schools. Through learning up to building joint activities involving all the diverse students could familiarize students to respect and honor one another’s differences. History teacher of State High School (SMA Negeri) 12 Bekasi, West Java, Endah Priyatni said that the subject of History can strengthen students’ understanding that Indonesia since the beginning has been diverse. The history of the origin of the ancestors, about the archipelago and up to the birth of Pancasila shows that this nation is not owned by only a group of people.

Endah said that she developed an interesting history lesson using comic media. This is to make that subject in school to be meaningful in building the love of the young generation towards the nation’s history.  She added that the ability of teachers to bring learning contents relevant to the conditions of this nation should be strengthened. Religious education must also be able to develop interreligious dialogues.

Chairperson of Cahaya Guru Foundation, Henny Supolo Sitepu hopes that the school will give space to reinforce the spirit of diversity, accepting diversity with mutual respect, and then willing to live together in harmony and peace, as mandated by Pancasila. Therefore, the foundation she leads wishes to restore teachers in schools as references to diversity.  To that end, the Diversity Teachers School (SGK) exists to equip teachers with the ability to develop the spirit of diversity beginning from oneself then shared to students and the school environment.

The Ministry of Religious Affairs has been conducting interfaith teacher dialogues program since 2013 in a number of provinces. Head of Research and Development Agency of Ministry of Religious Affairs, Abdurrahman Mas`ud said that every year 30 religious education teachers attend workshops containing material on citizenship, pluralism, and contributions of religion. Some of the manifestations that have been applied are mutual support among believers of different religions, peace campaigns, and student visits to different houses of worship.

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