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Slobodanka Milanovic - Nahod, Mira Djurisic - Bojanovic, Vera Spasenovic, Branka Savovic, Djordje Kadijevic

This research aimed to identify and consider problems and the present condition of our primary and secondary schools from a perspective of pupils and teachers, the main participants in educational process. The formulation of questions the questionnaire we used consisted of enabled us to gain insight into difficulties which pupils of primary and secondary schools at the school-leaving age and their teachers experience in course of obtaining knowledge (in the process of education) and in communication (behavioural aspect). We examined a representative sample of 562 primary school pupils, 727 secondary school pupils and 275 teachers from Belgrade, Nis and Novi Sad. Analysing the outcomes we concluded that learning (incapability to concentarate on work ), excessive curricula, methods of work at school ( no discussions, no group work) and contents of subjects (uninteresting) create the major difficulties for pupils. However, pupils assume a definitely positive attitude towards school (influence of peers). Teachers evaluate the volume and contents of subjects in the similar way like pupils but disagree with them on teaching methods. On the other hand, they entirely agree on exclusion of some subjects and on introduction of the new ones as well as on the question of compulsory / elective subjects. The problems of absenteeism (on most occasions pupils try to avoid evaluation of their scholastic work and to maintain good marks in that way) and of allegedly excused absence (feeble excuses made mostly by mothers) show the negative attitude towards obtaining knowledge. Communication both among pupils and between pupils and teachers was evaluated as bad (aggressive behaviour, insults, threats). Nevertheless, the expectations of pupils and teachers mentioned in form of suggestions point to concrete and indispensable changes to be made in the educational process.