• Germany's news in English

Schools must curb immigrant pupils' anti-German attitudes, Böhmer says

The Local · 8 Oct 2010, 09:00

Published: 08 Oct 2010 09:00 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

“We must take the reports from Berlin schools seriously,” the conservative politician told daily Passauer Neue Presse. “It is obviously no longer an isolated incident that students and teachers are forced to hear anti-German statements.”

It is intolerable that German students and teachers might feel hectored in this way, she told the paper.

German is the official language in schools, which “must be a matter of course,” she said.

When just one language is spoken, conflicts that could arise from social exclusion or misunderstandings are avoided.

Therefore schools with a high number of students from immigrant families need more support, she said.

“They need more money, more teachers and school social workers, in addition to more time so they can offer full-time education,” Böhmer added.

Story continues below…

Other local initiatives, such as integration guides, can also help bring immigrants out of isolation and into the German education system, she said.


The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

11:37 October 8, 2010 by William Thirteen
a bit thin skinned eh?

'It is obviously no longer an isolated incident that students and teachers are forced to hear anti-German statements.'
12:19 October 8, 2010 by dankworth
Welcome to the new Germany. Berlin is just the beginning
13:58 October 8, 2010 by nicoatridge
It is always disappointing to find that immigrants are disparaging towards their hosts, but in some ways it links to another theme - of indigineous people wary of foreign incomers. Immigration is an unstoppable (and, when managed, welcome) face of modern society, and immigrants will need help assimilating, but we need to show zero tolerance to non-EU citizens who clearly don't like being here or who show support for those who would harm us. it is one thing to be generous to guests, another to let them take advantage.
14:33 October 8, 2010 by AyaMatsuura
^ Well if they bother you that much you're free to leave.

I don't understand people who move to Germany or any other country if they hate it so much. I've never understood that. If they refuse to assimilate or continue to disparage the natives they need to leave. They won't benefit anyone.
14:37 October 8, 2010 by T Gonzaga
Should we be surprised that immigrants disparage and look down upon their hosts, who have afforded them a developed nation to live and work in and possibly a safe haven from persecution????? Not at all. When we pander to immigrants; when we defer to all their cultural practices, even barbarous ones like female circumcision and primitive ones like denigration and disinheritance of women, as well as censorship, theocracy etc. we undermine our political and social values. Essentially, we capitulate to their prejudices and when these children are at home, all they hear are negative comments in their parents' native tongue, about these foreigners. Hello...this is our country! You do not achieve integration this way. The american novel "Up Dog Street" describes just such a group in South FLorida. An enclave where there is outright disdain for democracy and though the protagonist affirms that he is not his heritage, that birthplace means nothing and that nurture is everything...no one is listening, possibly because he is saying it in English, rather than spanish. Civilizations die from suicide, not murder, Toynbee said. This is proof.
14:41 October 8, 2010 by rajkshan
Maybe it comes from the local society and also the teachers. I am an Immigirant who learned German by self initiative. I have not been anywhere to learn N had cleared B1 quite some time back. My son who is very good in German, has been demotivated by the German teacher saying that "you are an Immigrant and cannot be on par with us". This is TRUE. But we kept quite, not taking up the matter to the school as it might reciprocate on my Son's education which we think is important. Latter I came to know from the school that the same teacher has used the same kind of words even to other children and even now it is continuing. She does not take class for my son any more. There is also a couple of other staffs who have the same attitude which we came know through other parents (non Muslim). So if this is the attitude, then ..........
14:42 October 8, 2010 by Wise Up!
A clear result of multi-culturalism, where immigrants are allowed to opt-out of integrationg into their new home, and all cultures are treated equal including an anti-German one.
14:46 October 8, 2010 by supernova
@ayaMatsuura: You must know that expecting immigrants to assimilate in a society is a negative, immoral & unsuccessful expectation. No civilized western country expects immigrants to assimilate but to integrate. The right expectation is that of integration. You probably do not know the difference b/w assimilation & integration. Integration is if someone, speaks the language, know his rights and gets along with folks. Assimilation is if someone becomes like the other one, religiously, culturally or mentally seen. You can forget that. Perhaps you should think about changing German attitude and especially that of German teachers against immigrant kids who send them to State run Real Schule (a low class German school producing low class workers) instead of State run Gymnasuim (an upper class German school producing upper class workers) in 5th class because of the common prejudice about immigrants that they are stupid. I call it systematic discrimination. Every immigrant is not in Germany because he/she has found a safe heaven cuz of persecution, on contrary they're here cuz of work which means contributing to German tax system...
14:53 October 8, 2010 by freechoice
humans are infallible, teachers have certain stereotypical views of immigrant students, immigrant students have stereotypical views of teachers...let's move on and make this country great!
15:03 October 8, 2010 by michael4096
to all those talking about immigrants coming to germany... this article talks about children almost all of whom were born here without much choice in the matter and no other 'home' to go to

however, germany does have very strict laws about being nice and polite to each other, particularly in the workplace, and it is sensible to make children aware of it before they get into bad habits
16:52 October 8, 2010 by OkieinBerlin
Thanks for history lesson -- Toynbee himself might be impressed, but I doubt it. Anyway, if I am at all representative of immigrants to Germany -- and why not, apparently we are all the same -- most of us gladly acknowledge and appreciate the many opportunities afforded us by Germany, Germans and German culture. One thing I don't like about Germany, something I badmouth often, privately and in public, is the occasional bigot.
17:11 October 8, 2010 by tallady
OkienBerlin..I think being an immigrant in Germany is very easy if you take the time to learn the norms of the society. Bigot bashing is fun and there are no shortages of bigots here,how about a beer and a discussion on successful integration.
17:21 October 8, 2010 by recherche
All we hear about in Western Europe plus Anglophone countries is 'racism'. It is not a matter of relevance elsewhere in the World. Is it a hangover from 70 years ago? Homo sapiens is a social animal and that is fundamental to the success, so far, of the species. Not wishing to get involved in the right or wrong of racism, there does seem to be a very fundamental problem with denying the probity of racist sentiment, and with ostentatiously gagging anyone who stands up in defence of their culture. There are many minority cultural groups who are 'guilty' of extreme racist attitudes, but they are tolerated even lauded for merely defending their people. Defending German and European culture generally seems impossible at present. Logically people such as Sarrazin, Sarkosy, Wilders etc should be engaged in debate and a rational evolution of ideas. At present that is impossible, and it is high time Europeans moved on and concentrated on ensuring their own survival
17:37 October 8, 2010 by michael4096
"..'racism'. It is not a matter of relevance elsewhere in the World."

I think I'd like to live on your world because on this one I can't think of a country anywhere where racism in general isn't of relevance. In europe it gets a high profile exactly because so many are trying to move on.

As far as defending cultures is concerned, why? A 'culture' in europe is a pretty short-lived thing in many ways. We've had thousands over the centuries and though few have totally disappeared, all have evolved. Which is exactly what is happening now.
19:30 October 8, 2010 by OkieinBerlin
tall lady, ein bisschen bigot-bashing und ein bier klingt gut! Now how is that for integrated!
20:54 October 8, 2010 by Deutschguy
My impression is that the 'anti-German' attitudes probably come the parents of immigrant students. I can only imagine the frustration of being an immigrant bread winner, having to learn a new language, and adopting acceptance of cultural customs that are literally 'foreign' to me.

I think all of the above gets transmitted to immigrant children, esp. if the parents experience aloofness or outright disdain, verbal or non-verbal, from Germans in their daily interactions. That said, immigrants are here because they seek a better life than what they had where they came from.

I have a German friend who is half Italian. Even though both his parents were of German citizenship, he was told kindergarten places were for "people from better families." He's never forgotten it, even though today, he is German Uni educated, a professional, and a business owner.

Factor in also, that some immigrants religious backgrounds repeatedly express moral disapproval of Western European/ German cultural norms, like women's freedoms and sexual mores.
17:13 October 9, 2010 by Bruno53
Is criticizing discrimination in Germany "anti German" talking? But this same person who may criticize discrimination,me, in Germany is the same person who admires two Germans: Johann Sebastian Bach and Ludwig van Beethoven. Depends how you interpret it.
23:20 October 9, 2010 by willowsdad
Nowhere in this article does it give any examples of these "anti-German" sentiments. Are these people saying they don't want to hear criticisms of Germany from immigrants?
01:20 October 10, 2010 by antrodemus
I'm sure they also listen to un-German music and read un-German literature.
10:56 October 10, 2010 by Johnne

You´ve said it all. The perception is that all immigrants, especially non EU citizens are here to hustle, have escaped death, poverty and illiteracy. My family own four houses in the UK, two in Belgium, and one here in Germany. I´m uni educated with MBAs, I won my own business here in Munich, and I head a Muti-million dollar, 439 employee firm in Africa and my wife is a Senior Accountant. Now, tell me how my family for example, escaped death, poverty and prosecution in my fatherland? I think I contribute more to this society more than many "native Germans" WE MUST LEARN TO LIVE TOGETHER AN ONE!!
22:08 October 10, 2010 by wxman
Come on, this isn't too hard to understand if you just stop and think. The reason they dislike and resent the Germans is because you all haven't left and turned the country over to them yet!
Today's headlines
Creepy clown scare spreads to Germany
Two of the clowns were apparently equipped with chainsaws. Photo: Pedro Pardo / AFP file picture

Police said Friday five incidents involving so-called scary clowns had occurred in two north German town, including one assailant who hit a man with a baseball bat, amid fears that Halloween could spark a rash of similar attacks.

Student fined for spying on women via their webcams
Photo: DPA

Student from Munich fined €1,000 for spying on 32 different computers, using their webcams to take photographs, or record their keyboard history.

This is how much startup geeks earn in Germany
Photo: DPA

A comprehensive new survey of 143 startup founders shows how much you are likely to be earning at a German startup, from entry level all the way up to sitting on the board.

Man dies after beating for peeing near Freiburg church
The Johannes Church in Freiburg. Photo Jörgens Mi/Wikipedia

A middle-aged man from southern Germany has died after being attacked by a group of men who took umbrage with the fact he was urinating in the vicinity of a church.

The Local List
Seven German celebrities with uncanny doppelgängers
Former Berlin mayor Klaus Wowereit and actor Alec Baldwin. Photo: DPA; Gage Skidmore, Wikimedia Commons

Check out these seven look-a-likes of well known German figures - we admit that some are more tenuous than others...

Israel seeks to buy three new German submarines: report
A Dolphin class submarine. Photo: DPA

Israel is seeking to buy three more advanced submarines from Germany at a combined price of €1.2 billion, an Israeli newspaper reported Friday.

Here’s where people live the longest in Germany
Photo: DPA

Germans down south seem to know the secret to a long life.

More Germans identify as LGBT than in rest of Europe
Photo: DPA

The percentage of the German population which identifies as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender is higher than anywhere else in Europe, according to a new study.

'Reichsbürger' pair attack police in Saxony-Anhalt
File photo: DPA.

A "Reichsbürger" and his wife attacked police officers on Thursday, just a day after another Reichsbürger fatally shot an officer in Bavaria.

Five things not to miss at the Frankfurt Book Fair
Photo: DPA

From consulting a book doctor to immersing yourself in an author's world with the help of virtual reality, here are five things not to miss at this week's Frankfurt Book Fair, the world's largest publishing event.

Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
10 things you never knew about socialist East Germany
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
How Germans fell in love with America's favourite squash
How I ditched London for Berlin and became a published author
Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
12 clever German idioms that'll make you sound like a pro
23 fascinating facts you never knew about Berlin
9 unmissable events to check out in Germany this October
10 things you never knew about German reunification
10 things you're sure to notice after an Oktoberfest visit
Germany's 10 most Instagram-able places
15 pics that prove Germany is absolutely enchanting in autumn
10 German films you have to watch before you die
6 things about Munich that’ll stay with you forever
10 pieces of German slang you'll never learn in class
Ouch! Naked swimmer hospitalized after angler hooks his penis
Six reasons why Berlin is now known as 'the failed city'
15 tell-tale signs you’ll never quite master German
7 American habits that make Germans very, very uncomfortable
Story of a fugitive cow who outwitted police for weeks before capture
Eleven famous Germans with surnames that'll make your sides split
The best ways to get a visa as an American in Germany
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd