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My grandfather's family were of South African nationality ( English mom, German dad by country of birth) and were visiting German relatives when the war began. My Grandfathers dad wouldn't join the party and so my granddad and his brother were put in an institution of some kind. He called it a boarding school for - as he put it " Bad Germans." To re-educate the children. It was by his account a horribly abusive place. He stayed there for a year or so until his dad rescued them. He never really recovered from it. Can anyone give me any information about these places?

  • There was a "Jugendschutzlager" in Moringen/Lower Saxony - that was basically a concentration camp for "difficult" teenagers. This was quite abusive (to the extent that a significant number of the inmates died). I'm not sure it would have been possible to rescue somebody from there, though. – user3769 Aug 14 '17 at 19:02
  • Thank you. He would have been too young for that ( about 9 years old, his brother a year older.) – Marianne Elba Aug 14 '17 at 23:16
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I'm afraid there is no single term for this.

To re-educate the children.

This was basically any school in the Third Reich. All of them would (re)educate children with their propaganda.

It was by his account a horribly abusive place.

This also goes for all those places in that time. I don't think any kid thinks of the boarding school they were brought against their will as a good place. Coupled with the propaganda above and a focus on physical disciplinary action, it sure is hell. But there was no single special place or organization that one could name.

Even the Nazi's Elite went to boarding schools, Nationalpolitische Erziehungsanstalt called Napola, even those could be described as horribly abusive and this is where some of the Elite sent their children voluntarily.

There have been a few organizations to "deal" with kids in a more drastic way (Example, Example, no need to read if you want to sleep at night), but I don't think your relative was there. There was no coming back from those.

What you are looking for was probably called a Kinderheim, Erziehungsheim or Internat, all normal German words in use today. The Nazis simply took the existing organizations and infected them with their ideology.

  • I'm guessing there'd be a difference between everyday propaganda at a typical school and the treatment the kids of dissenters could expect as a special school just for their kids. – T.E.D. Aug 14 '17 at 14:32
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    Thank you. This is all very interesting. By his account his father walked in one night. Picked them up and carried them out. So I think it must have been more like a school than a prison, security wise. He said they were made to compete for food and if someone was slow or weak the other children were forced to beat them. Etc. Messed up stuff but probably standard enough Nazi strategy. – Marianne Elba Aug 14 '17 at 23:22
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    @T.E.D. Yes, but mostly in quantity, not quality. If getting beaten and having no meal for giving the wrong answer is the norm, obviously kids giving more "wrong" answers are punished more. If there is no-one to complain if the kid is treated unfairly, punishment is harsher and more often. For a whole different quality, the examples above apply. – nvoigt Aug 15 '17 at 8:09
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    @MarianneElba Orphanages or boarding schools are sometimes messed up, even without an evil ideology like National Socialism. Just look at last years newspaper and you will find articles how they messed up children's lifes real good, even today. Some are small dictatorships in it's own. Adding Nazi ideology (or any other) will make the exceptions the norm. – nvoigt Aug 15 '17 at 8:14

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