Is Goa overrated as a destination

Really already 75 years? On the history of the Oberalster grammar school

The GOA as a pioneer? The invention of a new upper secondary school (1968-1973)

After the end of the National Socialist dictatorship, it became the educational policy goal to raise the level of the general university entrance qualification again. One consequence was excessive material catalogs as well as a large number of examination subjects in the Abitur. As early as the early 1950s, however, there were also reform proposals: The number of Abitur examination subjects was to be reduced, options were to be introduced and the canon of subjects to be reduced in the sense of exemplary learning. When the education ministers of the federal states reorganized the upper levels of the gymnasium in 1961, some reform ideas were already incorporated: There were (limited) options and the federal states were able to introduce a “pre-school diploma” so that certain examination subjects were passed a year before the school leaving examination. (Compare with: “Hochschulreife und Oberstufenreform” (p. 41-46) and “The new design of the gymnasiale Oberstufe” (p. 62-68), in: Helge Schröder: Between school reform and educational expansion Example from the Lower Saxony Philological Association. Hamburg 1999.)
The pressure to reform grew, however, and then came the politically troubled late 1960s. In particular, the fixed teaching in class and the distinction between major and minor subjects was no longer felt to be up-to-date. In 1972 there was a big break with the “Agreement to reorganize the upper levels of the gymnasium”: A completely new model of individual differentiation in basic and advanced courses replaced both the class as well as the traditional mathematical, scientific or linguistic orientation of the upper levels. The upper level and the Abitur examination were “legalized” to a high degree, the achievement of the necessary “points” became more important for the students than questions about the content or the question about the respective subject. Because: The many freedoms that resulted from the reformed upper secondary school level were again limited by the introduction of admission restrictions in many subjects (“Numerus Clausus”). The school year 1976/77 was planned as the latest introduction date for the reform of the upper level - the states were therefore able to plan and try out four years.

In Hamburg, especially in the north-east of the Hanseatic city, things looked different: the GOA had already embarked on the way to a new upper school system in the summer of 1968 and thus - with a few other schools - became a pioneer in the Hamburg education system! As early as the summer of 1968, a “Upper Level Reform Working Group” made up of teachers, pupils and parents came together at the GOA: More democracy, new forms of teaching and new content should change the upper level of the grammar school. The working group drew its suggestions from the “Political Working Group Upper Level”, in which teachers had already discussed the future of the upper level intensively as early as 1968-70, but also from the discussion results in the discussion part of the Saturday “Teachers' Football Group”. There were also excursions, such as to the Halpagen grammar school in Buxtehude, which was a pioneering school. The GOA has become one of these too: the last year in the class group passed the school-leaving exam in 1970, followed by a trial phase with cross-year courses, the dissolution of the class groups and the introduction of a tutor system. The pupils could not only choose courses and content, but (if offered) also from the teachers who offered the respective courses. Wherever possible, the order of the contents could be determined by the students themselves (this applied e.g. to social studies). Helmuth Peets remembers “extremely fruitful social studies hours with violent, controversial arguments between autonomous Che Guevara and Rudi Dutschke sympathizers and conservative students”. (Helmuth Peets: 25 years of reformed upper school at the GOA. In: 1945 to 1995. Oberalster grammar school, pp. 22-23)

The phase of the independent upper level developed at the GOA lasted only three years. With the adoption of the “Reorganization of the Gymnasiale Oberstufe” by the Conference of Culture Ministers (KMK), the Hamburg-wide introductory phase of the new system began - again it was the GOA that tested the new system in a first group of schools.

But the euphoria was followed by disillusionment. In particular, the lack of study places and the introduction of a “Numerus Clausus” (NC) in many subjects had unpleasant consequences. The GOA school newspaper "reflect II" wrote on February 14, 1974: