All Salesian educational activities are carried out according to a basic educational philosophy, which is usually
referred to as The Preventive System. The Preventive System is a stream of positive activity flowing throughout
the whole school, from the Principal to the youngest students which by its very positiveness excludes disorders
The Preventive approach is based on assistance and accompaniment, where the educator is perceived as father,
mother, brother, sister, guide and protector. The Expressive approach is based on encouragement and
motivation. It is growth enhancing.
The System is based on three pillars: reason, religion and loving-kindness. The Preventive System makes a
friend of the pupil, who looks upon his educator as a benefactor who advises him, wishes to make him good, to
save him from trouble, from punishments, and from dishonour.
The Preventive System demands from the teachers a well-planned, suitable, interesting course of studies for the
students. How often disciplinary problems among the students are the direct result of hasty, or non-prepared
classes? Students should know in advance the year’s general program, the monthly and weekly proposed areas
to cover. A teacher, who does not conscientiously prepare his classes, fails not only against the Preventive
System, but also against justice.
Teachers are assistants, guides and directors, and should be found mingling often with the students. They should
join, if possible, in student activities, be present in recreation with them, not as supervisors, but as assistants.
Belongingness, security, and recognition are attained in this system of education by the confidence generated
through this interpersonal relationship between pupils and teachers who, in Don Bosco’s words, are like “loving
fathers” encouraging and praising at the proper moment.
The needs for attention and recognition are fulfilled by wholesome outlets: sports, music, drama, field trips and
a countless number of school activities.
The educator in a Salesian school seeks to minimize the negative effects of the so-called “generation gap”
fostering the proper balance between authority and permissiveness, by blending freedom with responsibility,
integrating the old and the new. In a word, he fosters true and genuine humanism. To stop at human values and
not go beyond was inconceivable for Don Bosco: he placed great emphasis on the second factor of the Salesian