Archives of Institute for Slovenian Studies of Victoria Inc. 1976 – 2009

Introduction

The archives of the Institute consist of over 2,000 documents. The archivist is Aleksandra Ceferin who has collated and maintained documents of the activities connected with the teaching of Slovenian language in the school system from 1976.
They have been categorized according to the institutions that were involved in the teaching of Slovenian language as a secondary subject in the State of Victoria from the years 1976 to 2005. The key documents to 2003 have been scanned, and will be published on the Web. The main categories of the archives are listed below with a brief description.
Archives of Slovenian Language Studies of Victoria 1976 – 2005

The first steps towards Slovenian language teaching in a state school system in Australia were taken in Victoria in 1976. Aleksandra L Ceferin (BA, MA, Dip.Ed) made the approach to the Chairman of the Committee for Balto-Slavonic Languages, Prof J Marvan regarding the introduction of Slovenian language as a matriculation (Higher School Certificate) subject in Victoria. The response was positive and A.L Ceferin prepared the necessary documentation, but the introduction was deferred, because of the moratorium of all new subjects in the Victorian school system for the next two years.
Subsequently A.L.Ceferin approached the Saturday School of Modern Languages, a school in the state educational system of Victoria. After fulfilling a set of requirements, Slovenian was formally introduced as an elective subject for the school year 1977.


Victorian Universities and Secondary Education Board / VUSEB 1976

The first steps towards Slovenian language teaching in a state school system in Australia were taken in Victoria in 1976. Aleksandra L Ceferin (BA,MA, Dip.Ed) made the approach to the Chairman of the Committee for Balto-Slavonic Languages, Prof J Marvan regarding the introduction of Slovenian language as a matriculation (Higher School Certificate) subject in Victoria. The response was positive and A.L Ceferin prepared the necessary documentation, but the introduction was deferred, because of the moratorium of all new subjects in the Victorian school system for the next two years.
Subsequently A.L.Ceferin approached the Saturday School of Modern Languages, a school in the state educational system of Victoria. After fulfilling a set of requirements, Slovenian was formally introduced as an elective subject for the school year 1977.

Victorian Institute of Secondary Education / VISE, 1978 – 1986

VISE took over the role and function of VUSEB in 1978 and set out to reform, review and re-accredit the matriculation subject assessment. There were two major steps.
The first step was to introduce a new system of assessment, making it part of the learning process, and introducing a greater variety of the types of assessment. The beginning was made with accreditation of new subjects, with Slovenian language the first of the so-called Group 2 subjects.
The second step was taken with a major review and re-accreditation of all subjects, including those introduced into the system in 1980.
The process, which began with correspondence between A L Ceferin and VISE, Curriculum and Assessment Branch Liaison Officers took about half a year, finishing with the publication of the Higher School Certificate Course Description, Slovenian Group 2 booklet. The course was accredited for 3 years, 1980 to 1983.

Board of Senior School Studies,  New South Wales, 1978 – 1980

Prof. A J Dunston, University of Sydney contacted A Ceferin about the possibility of assisting in the introduction of Slovenian as HSC subject in New South Wales. She responded by providing a Slovene syllabus and assisting in the preparation and assessment of the first examination paper, and acting as consultant together with Prof J Marvan (Monash University) and Prof  R G A de Bray, Australian National University, Canberra.
At this stage NSW and Victorian education departments were cooperating to accommodate particularly the teaching of many languages as national policy turned towards a multicultural view of Australian society. This was the time when NSW established the Saturday School of Modern Languages on the model of Saturday School of Modern Languages in Victoria.
After this initial cooperation in introducing Slovenian language into the Australian education system, the two states functioned independently. It was only in 1991, when the new reform was ushered in that all so called minority langauges began to operate on an interstate basis and shared the common assessment in instruments (Year 12 written examinations).


Saturday School of Modern Languages / SSML 1976 – 1987

A  L Ceferin approached the Saturday School of Modern Languages, a Victorian educational institution offering to students a selection of language classes to attend on Saturdays, about the introduction of Slovenian as a elective subject in the state school system in 1976. The approach was successful. The set conditions were met and the first classes were offered in 1977.


Victorian School of Languages / VSL 1988 – 2005

In 1988 the name of the school was changed from Saturday School of Modern Languages to Victorian School of Languages, and it had won its battle to be recognized as a special state school with the same status as all other schools. As the first sign of status it received permission to establish a school council, run elections and expect a range of improvement in conditions, such as hours of teaching, payment of teachers, professional development, etc.
During the nineties the school undertook a major reform in administration, professional development and curriculum and took responsibility for Distance Education for languages offered by the Education Department. It also published a great deal of language education material. It continues to offer and develop courses for languages of the newly arrived ethnic groups, and it is still growing.

Slovenian Teachers Association of Victoria 1976 – 1998

The association was founded in September 1976, with the aim of organizing the teachers and the resources necessary to successfully introduce and maintain Slovenian language in the state school system of Victoria. Most of STAV correspondence dealt with the acquisition of teaching resources overseas.

The association was founded in September 1976, with the aim of organizing the teachers and the resources necessary to successfully introduce and maintain Slovenian language in the state school system of Victoria. Most of STAV correspondence dealt with the acquisition of teaching resources overseas.
Some of its functions were replaced from 1986 – 1991 by the organisation Slovenian Language Teachers, Students and Parents Association of  Victoria/SLTSPAV. It responded to the need of the broader membership framework of the total school community. From 1993 to 1995 Slovenian Language Society/SLS was formed, with the aim of involving and activating the younger generation.
In 1998 The Institute for Slovenian Studies of Victoria was formed, with newly defined aims and broadened  membership.

Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Board / VCAB 1986 – 1993

VCAB took over from VISE in February 1986, ushering in the next, much more fundamental education reform in the state of Victoria. Field of Studies Committees (FOSC) for all the main areas of studies, including Languages Other Than English (LOTE). Each FOSC, about 24 in number, comprised members from all branches of education. A Al Ceferin was nominated in the category of practicing language teacher, and served from 1986 to 1991, when the new two year (years 11 & 12) Victorian Certificate of Education/VCE (matriculation) was completed and introduced in stages into the school system of Victoria. A L Ceferin participated in work-shops and in-services introducing secondary school language teachers to the radically new system. Beside developing the VCE Slovenian course, she participated in course development of several sample German Yr 11 and Yr 12 units of work.


Slovenian Language Teachers, Students, Parents Association of Victoria 1986 – 1990

SLTSPAV was founded in 1986, taking in many respects the place of the professional Slovenian Teachers Association and broadening its membership into the concept of the Slovenian school community.  It was formed in response to changes affecting all the families with school children. There was a greater need to involve parents and inform them about the new options and choice opening up with changes in education.
The association was formed in 1986 and was active till 1990.

Published Articles 1977 – 2005

The articles – mostly in Slovenian – were written to inform the Slovenian community about the available classes and educational issues including matters of a multicultural nature of interest to the community and their organizations. The majority of articles were written by Aleksandra L Ceferin, a number by Drago Ceferin, who also did most of the necessary research on non-educational matters. In more recent years there are also articles published in the Slovenian media.
As a body of work, they represent an informative background on Slovenian teaching, classes and educational reform in Victoria over three decades.

Last Updated on: 24 February 2010

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Aleksandra Ceferin
Aleksandra Ceferin

Aleksandra Ceferin (M.A., B.A., Dip.Ed.) has introduced Slovenian language as a school subject in Australian school system and founded the Slovenian Teachers' Association of Victoria in 1976. She has extensive experience in language education: as teacher, lecturer, curriculum coordinator, course writer, language consultant and manager, VCE State Reviewer and Chief Examiner. Since 1998 she has been the President of ISSV and the manager and chief editor of its projects. Aleksandra visits Slovenian annually, establishing and maintaining contacts with Slovenia, and initiating exchanges and cooperation between organizations. In 2004 she was the recipient of the National Education Award of RS Slovenia.