In 1989 Serbian leader Slobodan Milosevic imposed direct rule over the Kosovo which had formerly been an autonomous province of Serbia.
As part of a policy of cultural oppression and in an attempt to undermine national identity of Kosovans, the majority of whom were ethnic Albanian, Milosevic and the Belgrade targeted Albanian language education and removed thousands of ethnic Albanian teachers and students from the education system in Kosovo.
Additionally in 1990 and 1991, Belgrade imposed a new educational curricula which promoted Serbian culture and made Serbo-Croation language compulsory and an entry requirement for secondary education. In response Kosovan’s set up a parallel education system to provide education for Albanian speaking Kosovans throughout the 1990s using private family homes, empty businesses and previously abandoned school buildings as schools.
An estimated 3200 private homes and other buildings were used as schools providing education for more than 100,000 students in Kosovo.