Tony Gallagher, Professor of Education delivered a keynote speech at the 23rd EuroClio Annual Conference “Reimagining Remembrance” currently taking place in Belfast, Northern Ireland. During his presentation (available for download in .pdf below), Mr. Gallagher discussed the role of education systems in a divided society, while presenting the case of Northern Ireland. He stressed that history education should “engage more critically and effectively with what is taught outside the classroom.”

Local and global issues exist in parallel and not enough connections are being made.

In his speech, Mr. Gallagher posed some very important questions that history education nowadays encounter like “Should minorities be entitled to institutional recognition?” and “Is pursuit of tolerance a core goal?” Furthermore, he discussed the differences, features and (dis)advantages of separate versus common schools. Subsequently, he described the development of history and citizenship education in Northern Ireland.

His overall conclusion was threefold: we should support the engagement of difficult issues, promote critical learning communities, and we should learn from other contexts, while developing our own solutions.