Remembrance of the Past; Building for the Future." ~ Eve
Remembering Our Danube Swabian Ancestors
By Peter Lang
Translated by Brad Schwebler
The German schools in the beginning were probably commonly
Evangelical-Reformed denominational schools but from 1878 on changed over to
communal schools.The teachers were
paid by the political community for it and also supervised on the secular side.A disadvantage of this existed in the danger of Slavicizing the German.But actually the Germans were not Slavicized, because the following
principles were influential for school politics.
1: A successful instruction can only
be given in the mother tongue.
2: Each person should master the
language of the land in their own interests in writing and speech.
3: Whichever point of view takes
precedence, those affected must remain unaffected.
The Germans of Beschka gave the first principles the point of view, but
did not completely realize them.So
they could nevertheless keep their mother tongue, it was principally used by the
family in the workplace and the church service was always conducted in the
German language.In school the
first two grades of instruction were always given in the mother tongue.In the first school year Gothic writing was taught and in the second year
Latin writing was taught.In the
third year Cyrillic writing was taught as well as and the Serbo-Croatian
language was adapted to Latin writing.The
adapted Latin writing had disastrous consequences with several deviations on
correct writing (c = z, s = silent s, s with a hook = sch, z = voiced s as for
example in the word Rose, z with a hook = voiced sch as for example in the word
Gendarm).No wonder the children, for example, wrote Roze instead of
Rose, Ros instead of Roß, and Suh instead of Schuh.For this reason it was advantageous to use predominantly Gothic writing (Fraktur).In this script considerably fewer mistakes were maded.
In the period of time of 1878,
when there were no German teachers in Beschka, the Rev. (Polereczky) was also a
teacher.From 1878 on there was
also a Serbian teacher, who mastered German, who was teacher for the German
children.Jakob Filippi (vgl. Reg.
No. 536) likes to remember his Serbian female teacher Danica Mandic.She was in Beschka for many years and she instructed German children
exclusively.She came from Sremska Mitrowitza and behaved very correctly.
The school routine began in the
seventh year of life and lasted for four years until the turn of the century.After the turn of the century school time was lengthened to five years.From this time on lessons in the fifth year were exclusively Serbian.Only two hours per week did the German teacher give additional lessons in
German.These hours were paid for
by the political community.Starting
in the 1930’s there was a sixth school year and in 1941 a seventh school year
was introduced.Before the
introduction of the sixth school year there was also continuing education which
all students who had left school had to attend one day per week.The exception, however, was the apprentice who attended a trade school.In the continuing education schools the German children were separated
from the Serbian children and practiced German and arithmetic.
The German teachers were
essentially already named in the report about the church history.In the time after Schumacher there was only teacher Zert for the
Reformed.For the Evangelists the
Slovakian Karl Lilge was the German teacher from about 1910 to 1927, Evangelical
organist and choir leader.From
1927 on, besides Bächer and Lang, teacher Branko Buta also worked as German
teacher, who was the son of the Serbian pastor, Rev. Buta, and as he was
relieved by Fritz Kühbauch in 1938, Miss Jelka Obradovic was also a German
teacher until 1941.But she also
remained in the Serbian department of the school.Because all German children in the fifth and later in the sixth school
year went to the Serbian school, I want to name those names that I can remember:
Adam Obradovic, principal until about 1925, whose daughter Jelka Obradovic, then
the other daughter Zagarka Obradovic, Djoka Jovanovic, principal after Obradovic
until his death in 1931.His
successor was Branko Buta, who was already named as a German teacher, until
about 1936.Velislav Starcevic
followed him as principal.Other
Serbian teachers were: Kontesse (Count’s daughter) Olga von Rittberg, Ms.
Sophia Buta, Miss Marina Sladakovic, the married couple Katica and Branko
Stojadinovic (a very good draftsman), the young teacher Arackie, and still
another two or three female teachers whose names I no longer know.