“We think, that all our students are unique“, explains Stefan Osthoff to journalists. And that is no empty talk. For Osthoff the consequences are obvious. As a member of the school management he says: “We educate 160 students with totally different special educational needs. We don’t want to pretend, that all of them are on the same level. Therefore we have to individualize our efforts in class“. The evangelical comprehensive school educates 900 students in total and inclusively. Nobody considers that as easy. Osthoff is one of the masterminds, when it comes to the integrative concept of the school. And that has been rewarded this May in Berlin, the capital of Germany. The jury of the German School Prize had agreed on one thing: “The inclusive education for children with a handicap and without one is a continuous principle in all classrooms and in every grade”.
But the Matthias Claudius School didn’t shine by a great variety of methods during inclusive classes alone. The jurors were impressed by “the remarkably esteeming and attentive communication culture of this school”.
The German School Prize has been initiated in 2006 by the Robert Bosch Foundation and the Heidehof Foundation. They cooperate with the ARD, a German television broadcaster and the Die Zeit publishing house.
It’s very clear for the MCS that inclusion is not trustworthy unless the question is dealt with: What is needed, that people can live their lives autonomously according to their own ideas. People don’t want to be administrated but deeply desired. The laudators were convinced this has been firmly fixed in the community life of the MCS: Christian ethos. But attitudes alone are not sufficient. Knowing that Osthoff explains: “Successful inclusion needs a sufficient number of teachers and appropriate equipment as well. “
The award was consigned by the Federal Minister of Education Ms. Anja Karliczek in Berlin. Parents, students and pedagogues were enthusiastic about the great honour.
Beside that: The Evangelical Martin School in Greifswald wins the first prize of the German School Award 2018, which is endowed with 100.000 euros.