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Re-education of juvenile political offenders in children’s homes 1944-1951

Stichting Film en Wetenschap | Project Cogis
Time period: 1944-1951
Number of interviews: 10
Accessibility: for research purposes
Transcripts: summary
Period of interviews: 2009

Can be found in DANS


Audio can be listened to via:



After the war, some 20,000 children of political offenders, mostly NSB members, ended up in children’s homes. Their parents could no longer care for them because they had been interned under the special postwar justice system. Among the children were also Youthful Political Delinquents (JPDs). In this interview project, former JPDs look back on their time in the children’s homes.


A JPD member could be a young person who himself had been active in the NSB youth movement, the Hitlerjugend or who had been deployed in Germany or on the Eastern Front. They could also be children as young as 13 whose parents belonged to the “more serious cases” of collaboration. For example, their parents had played an active role in the NSB or a German organization, had been active in Youth Storm or Hitlerjugend, or had been deployed in Germany or on the Eastern Front.


Social re-education after the war took place in special homes or camps run by Bureau Bijzondere Jeugdzorg. This agency was charged with the care and custody of children whose parents had been interned. JPD members were also entrusted to their care. In the eyes of the caregivers, this group in particular constituted a point of concern. It was felt that the elderly among them might be politically infected and could grow up to become “extremist discontented and disillusioned. Re-education into full-fledged Dutchmen was deemed necessary; only by teaching the JPD member to understand what democracy and patriotism meant could these children once again become full members of the community.


The phenomenon of political re-education was part of dealing with the “wrong elements” in postwar society. It was an outgrowth of the then dominant right-wrong thinking. The objective of this interview project is to investigate whether, in the experience of those involved, re-education occurred during their stay in the children’s homes, and if so, in what form and with what consequences.