Dilapidated schools, lack of meeting places: what do Dresden’s mayoral candidates want to do for children?

Dresden. Around 35,300 children between the ages of nine and fifteen and about 33,300 young people between the ages of sixteen and twenty-one live in Dresden. Many of them feel at home in Dresden, graduating from school and getting off to a successful start in their professional lives. Despite some adversity – dilapidated school buildings and lack of leisure meeting places e.g. And some get stuck, become addicted to computer games and come into contact with alcohol and drugs.

How much attention do the six mayoral candidates from the parliamentary groups represented in the city council want to give children and young people when they are elected? Sächsische.de confronted Eva Jähnigen (Greens), Dirk Hilbert (Association of Independent Citizens for Dresden), Albrecht Pallas (SPD), Maximilian Krah (AfD), André Schollbach (Left) and Martin Schulte-Wissermann (Pirates) with the biggest problems.

Task 1: Dangerous places in front of schools

The place: Both Stefan Kraft, parent representative at the 30th primary school in Hechtviertel, and Charlotte Krondorf, headmistress of Semper-Gymnasium, say clearly: The school road must be safer. Transitions are missing, as are traffic lights. How do the candidates react to this?

Schollbach: Left-wing mayoral candidate André Schollbach emphasizes that this topic as a father of two small children is close to him. “To improve safety on the way to school, I would like to set up more intersections, traffic lights and traffic lanes.” In addition, the maximum speed must be limited to 30 km / h at sensitive points.

Pallas and Jähnigen: SPD candidate Albrecht Pallas and the Green Party’s candidate Eva Jähnigen are also in favor of more cruises.

Schulte-Wissermann: Pirate candidate Martin Schulte-Wissermann says that roads that are temporarily closed to cars at the start of school can curb the bad habit of parental taxis.

Hilbert: Mayor Dirk Hilbert, who again stands for the “Association of Independent Citizens for Dresden”, says that the traffic technical solutions that are possible depend on the local conditions.

Krah: AfD candidate Maximilian Krah calls for improved collaboration between the city, schools and parents to identify security deficits.

Task 2: There is a big traffic jam when the schools need to be renovated.

The situation: Smelly toilets, crumbling plaster and leaky windows: there is still a lot missing in Dresden’s schools. It will take at least ten years before the renovation backlog is cleared, Education Mayor Jan Donhauser (CDU) recently told Sächsische.de.

Hilbert: Dirk Hilbert emphasizes that around 800 million euros have already been invested between 2015 and 2022. “Despite the implementation of numerous renovations and new construction, the need for renovation is still very high, which is why investments in the construction of school buildings are again the main focus on it municipal budget. ”

Pallas: SPD man Pallas will also “spend at least 100 million euros a year on upgrading and building new schools and gyms”.

years old: Eva Jähnigen from the Greens will lead a campaign for a round table on school construction. “Because first and foremost, we need much better project management and not more money.”

Schollbach: Left-wing candidate André Schollbach says: “To quickly reduce the renovation backlog in school buildings and gyms, I will create additional outsourcing sites.”

Schulte-Wissermann: The pirate Schulte-Wisssermann demands that the newly established office for schools “now build and renovate more efficiently and quickly”. The budget for school construction should not be reduced for this.

Krah: Maximilian Krah from AfD will speed up the planning of renovations. “There must be a clear prioritization of school investments to ensure the best school infrastructure throughout Dresden as soon as possible.”

Task 3: There is a lack of free space and meeting places for young people.

The place: Young people often feel like a disturbing factor and want places where they can meet. This is observed by the social workers Nathalie Stratmeier from the Neustadt youth work center in Diakonie and Paul List from the Friedrichstadt von Outlaw work center. Do the candidates want to create such retreats for children and young people?

Hilbert: Dirk Hilbert is surprised. “I can not share that in its entirety. We have a very well-established system of youth centers in Dresden as well as a wide range of offers, for example in sports or musical and artistic areas.” Hilbert emphasizes that he started by opening schoolyards and outdoor sports facilities or libraries last year. “We will continue to do so this year to gain more experience.”

Pallas: Albrecht Pallas confirms the impression and would like to “support schools, city libraries, the municipal music college and the adult education center to be able to develop or become part of meeting centers in their neighborhoods.” From the beginning, Pallas will consider meeting places when designing and redesigning outdoor school facilities, he says. You do not always have to be afraid that young people will ruin and ruin these places. “Children and especially young people need freedom in Dresden. When we develop our city, we must be more careful not to displace them.”

years old: Eva Jähnigen wants to “involve children and young people in shaping our city.” Young people would best know what places they like to use and how to design them to make them attractive places to spend their free time. Jähnigen wants “of course to make the school’s sports fields available for leisure activities,” she says. Youth clubs should also be open spaces, especially if they do not always have to be accompanied by specialists.

Schollbach: André Schollbach wants to create offers that are actually accepted. “I propose to actively involve young people in finding and creating free spaces and meeting places.” Schollbach says that the opening hours of youth clubs should be based on the needs of young people. “Own school sports grounds should be developed for open spaces outside the school’s operation.”

Krah: Maximilian Krah could imagine “skate parks as on Lingnerallee or playgrounds and sports fields as on Ostra Square” as open spaces. The close integration of leisure and school infrastructure is close to his heart.

Schulte-Wissermann: In this context, Schulte-Wissermann calls for the Drewag area on Martha-Fränkel Straße to become a meeting place. Instead of a parking space, he could imagine a skate park at this point. “I also see great potential for outdoor sports under the Dresden bridges.” The pirate also suggests, “If you are going to open the schoolyards, you can also include public gardening in the use.”

Problem 4: Not all schools have social workers.

The place: Arson in school toilets, violence, bullying: there are always problems in schools. Just over half of Dresden’s schools have a school social worker. Do the candidates want to spend more money on hiring additional specialists?

Hilbert: Hilbert emphasizes that as a city alone one would be overwhelmed, and he would like to hold talks with the Free State. “We can offer this support to more than 70 schools. In addition, we will soon support the schools with classes where Ukrainian students study with school social work.”

Pallas: Albrecht Pallas emphasizes that it is not just about school social work. “We are dependent on multi-professional teams, which in addition to school social work include inclusion assistance and career orientation.”

years old: Eva Jähnigen wants to strengthen the role of the school’s social workers. “They are affiliated with the school and are accessible to the school community, but not to the school management.”

Schollbach: Schollbach emphasizes that one can only be satisfied when all schools are equipped to meet their needs. “We are also dependent on the support of the Land of Saxony.”

Krah: Krah says that “school social work is important where it can be used to ensure learning success and thus future opportunities for children”. However, the city must prioritize here and “must not, as hitherto, distribute the scarce budget funds with the watering can.”

Schulte-Wissermann: Pirate candidate Schulte-Wissermann believes: “Social work with young people is a key to preventing costly long-term injuries from occurring in the first place. So yes.”

The Sächsische Zeitung will present the mayoral candidates to its readers in its own election forum. The event will take place on May 24 from 6 to 8 pm at the Mitte power plant. Theater Junge Generation opens the great hall for this. Two free tickets are given to each reader. Tickets are available at all DDV locations.

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