Education and Reconciliation in Northern Ireland

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Abstract

This chapter identifies new challenges for reconciliation that have emerged in Northern Ireland since the signing of the Belfast (Good Friday) Agreement in 1998. It is more than a decade since the agreement, so there are few children with direct experience or memory of the conflict. Nonetheless, there is a current debate about the role that education might have in helping new generations understand what happened in the past and recognise legacies of the conflict. A significant amount of the work on reconciliation has been funded by the European Union (EU) Programme for Peace and Reconciliation in Northern Ireland which has provided more than €2 billion since 1995. As this chapter shows, there are some lessons to be learned from having a reliable and sustained flow of international funding, particularly in terms of being able to adapt priorities and funding mechanisms to changing circumstances. Although this approach also carries some dangers such as the development of a peacebuilding economy that cannot be sustained into the post-conflict phase. The current phase, PEACE III (2007-13), has adopted a working definition of reconciliation developed by Hamber and Kelly (2004) with €225 million being provided for a range of initiatives with particular emphasis on ‘reconciling communities’ and ‘contributing to a shared society’ – these imply a role for education in reconciliation in Northern Ireland. In addition, whilst there is no formal truth and reconciliation commission in Northern Ireland, the government established an independent Consultative Group on the Past that published a report in 2009 with 31 recommendations on acknowledging and dealing with the past. Such initiatives, which call on education to accomplish a number of ambitious goals, pose significant challenges for educators within post-conflict societies. Education is often identified as a means toward future reconciliation, but usually with little definition about what this means conceptually or in practice.However, the case of Northern Ireland also provides examples of efforts by local actors such as parents, teachers, NGOs and community activists that emerged in th emidst of conflict, that are now providing a basis for peacebuilding in the post-conflict period. The chapter identifies some of these various initiatives and draws conclusionsabout the challenges still to be addressed.
LanguageEnglish
Title of host publicationEducation and Reconciliation. Exploring Conflict and Post-conflict Situations.
EditorsJulia Paulson
Pages55-80
Publication statusPublished - 31 Mar 2011

Fingerprint

reconciliation
education
funding
non-governmental organization
community
peace
parents
educator
economy
teacher
society
experience
Group

Keywords

  • education
  • conflict
  • war
  • peace
  • reconciliation
  • Northern Ireland
  • European Union

Cite this

Smith, A. (2011). Education and Reconciliation in Northern Ireland. In J. Paulson (Ed.), Education and Reconciliation. Exploring Conflict and Post-conflict Situations. (pp. 55-80)
Smith, Alan. / Education and Reconciliation in Northern Ireland. Education and Reconciliation. Exploring Conflict and Post-conflict Situations.. editor / Julia Paulson. 2011. pp. 55-80
@inbook{224166fb0fc747f1b451f2e05236aeee,
title = "Education and Reconciliation in Northern Ireland",
abstract = "This chapter identifies new challenges for reconciliation that have emerged in Northern Ireland since the signing of the Belfast (Good Friday) Agreement in 1998. It is more than a decade since the agreement, so there are few children with direct experience or memory of the conflict. Nonetheless, there is a current debate about the role that education might have in helping new generations understand what happened in the past and recognise legacies of the conflict. A significant amount of the work on reconciliation has been funded by the European Union (EU) Programme for Peace and Reconciliation in Northern Ireland which has provided more than €2 billion since 1995. As this chapter shows, there are some lessons to be learned from having a reliable and sustained flow of international funding, particularly in terms of being able to adapt priorities and funding mechanisms to changing circumstances. Although this approach also carries some dangers such as the development of a peacebuilding economy that cannot be sustained into the post-conflict phase. The current phase, PEACE III (2007-13), has adopted a working definition of reconciliation developed by Hamber and Kelly (2004) with €225 million being provided for a range of initiatives with particular emphasis on ‘reconciling communities’ and ‘contributing to a shared society’ – these imply a role for education in reconciliation in Northern Ireland. In addition, whilst there is no formal truth and reconciliation commission in Northern Ireland, the government established an independent Consultative Group on the Past that published a report in 2009 with 31 recommendations on acknowledging and dealing with the past. Such initiatives, which call on education to accomplish a number of ambitious goals, pose significant challenges for educators within post-conflict societies. Education is often identified as a means toward future reconciliation, but usually with little definition about what this means conceptually or in practice.However, the case of Northern Ireland also provides examples of efforts by local actors such as parents, teachers, NGOs and community activists that emerged in th emidst of conflict, that are now providing a basis for peacebuilding in the post-conflict period. The chapter identifies some of these various initiatives and draws conclusionsabout the challenges still to be addressed.",
keywords = "education, conflict, war, peace, reconciliation, Northern Ireland, European Union",
author = "Alan Smith",
note = "Reference text: BBC News (2000), ‘Prison officers leave the maze’, Friday 29 September. Available from: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/northern_ireland/948161.stm (Accessed 10 August 2010). Consultative Group on the Past (2009), Report of the Consultative Group of the Past. Belfast: Consultative Group on the Past. Cormack, R., Gallagher, A. M., and Osborne, R. (1991), ‘Religious affiliation and educational attainment in Northern Ireland: The financing of schools in Northern Ireland’, in Sixteenth Report of the Standing Advisory Commission on Human Rights, Report for 1990-1991, Annex E. London: HMSO. Cormack, R., Gallagher, A. M., and Osborne, R. (1992), ‘Access to grammar schools’, in Seventeenth Report of the Standing Advisory Commission on Human Rights, Annex E. London: HMSO. Department of Education for Northern Ireland (1998), Towards a Culture of Tolerance: Integrating Education. Bangor, Co Down: Department of Education. Department of Education for Northern Ireland (1999), Towards a Culture of Tolerance: Education for Diversity. Bangor, Co Down: Department of Education. Fay, M. T., Morrisey, M. and Smyth, M. (1999), Northern Ireland’s Troubles: The Human Costs. London: Pluto Press. Gallagher, A. M., Osborne, R. and Cormack, R. (1993), ‘Community Relations, Equality and Education,’ in A. M. Gallagher, R. Osborne and R. Cormack (eds) After the Reforms: Education and Policy in Northern Ireland. Aldershot: Avebury. Hamber, B. and Kelly, G. (2004), A Working Definition of Reconciliation. Occasional paper published by Democratic Dialogue, Belfast. Interim Commissioner for Victims Survivors (2007), Support for Victims and Survivors – Addressing the Human Legacy. Belfast. Magill, C., Smith, A. and Hamber, B. (2009), The Role of Education in Reconciliation. Report for EU Peace and Reconciliation Fund. Coleraine: University of Ulster. Morrissey, M. (2005), ‘The role of economic development in peace building: Some thoughts on PEACE II, Prosperity: A part of peace?’, Learning from the economic experience of PEACE II, Learning from PEACE II, Vol. 2, Community Relations Council. Murray, D. (1992), ‘Science and funding in Northern Ireland grammar schools: A case study approach’ in Seventeenth Report of the Standing Advisory Commission on Human Rights, Annex G. London: HMSO. Northern Ireland Curriculum (2006), Statutory Requirements for Local and Global Citizenship. Available from: http://www.nicurriculum.org.uk/docs/key_stage_3/areas_of_learning/statutory_requir ements/ks3_citizenship.pdf (Accessed 8 August 2010). Northern Ireland Life and Times Survey, University of Ulster and Queens University Belfast. Annual survey available online at: http://www.ark.ac.uk/nilt/ (Accessed 8 August 2010). Northern Ireland Office (1998), The Agreement, Belfast: NIO. Available from: http://cain.ulst.ac.uk/events/peace/docs/agreement.htm (Accessed 8 August 2010). O’Connor, U. (2008), Evaluation of the Pilot Introduction of Education for Local and Global Citizenship into the Revised Northern Ireland Curriculum, Coleraine: University of Ulster. Available from: http://unesco.ulster.ac.uk/PDFs/summaryreport.pdf (Accessed 6 August 2010). OCED-DAC (2007), Principles for Good International Engagement in Fragile States and Situations. Available from: http://www.oecd.org/dataoecd/61/45/38368714.pdf (Accessed 8 August 2010). Osborne, R. D. (1986), ‘Segregated schools and examination results in Northern Ireland’. Educational Research, 28 (1), 43-50. Paulson, J. (2010), ‘Truth commissions and national curriculum: The case of the Record{\'a}ndonos in Peru’, in S. Parmar, M.J. Roseman, S. Siegrist and T. Sowa (eds) Children and Transitional Justice: Truth-Telling, Accountability and Reconciliation. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press. Paulson, J. (2006), ‘The educational recommendations of Truth and Reconciliation Commissions: Potential and practice in Sierra Leone’. Research in Comparative and International Education, 1(4), 335-350. Smith, A. (2003), ‘Citizenship education in Northern Ireland’. Cambridge Journal of Education, 33(1), 15-31. Smith, A. (2001), ‘Religious segregation and the emergence of integrated schools in Northern Ireland’. Oxford Review of Education, 27(4), 559-575. Smith, A. and Dunn, S. (1990), Extending Inter School Links: An Evaluation of Contact between Protestant and Catholic Pupils in Northern Ireland. Coleraine: Centre for the Study of Conflict, University of Ulster. Smith, A. and Magill, C. (2009), 'Reconciliation. Does Education have a role?' Shared Space: A research journal on peace, conflict and community relations, 8(1), 5-15. Smith, A. and Robinson. A. (1996), Education for Mutual Understanding, The Statutory Years. Coleraine: Centre for the Study of Conflict, University of Ulster. Smith, A. and A. Robinson (1992), Education for Mutual Understanding: Perceptions and Policy. Coleraine: Centre for the Study of Conflict, University of Ulster. Special EU Programmes Body (2007), Peace III. EU Programme for Peace and Reconciliation 2007-2013. Northern Ireland and the Border Region of Ireland Operational Programme. Belfast: EU. Standing Advisory Commission on Human Rights (1987, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1992) Annual Reports. London: HMSO. UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre (2010), Children and Transitional Justice. Florence: UNICEF. Available from: http://www.unicef-irc.org/research/resource_pages/trans_justice/ (Accessed 8 August 2010). Woodrow, P. ‘Strategic Analysis for Peacebuilding Programs’, cited by Church, C. and Rogers, M. (2005), Designing for Results: Integrated Monitoring and Evaluation in Conflict Transformation Programs. Washington: Search for Common Ground.",
year = "2011",
month = "3",
day = "31",
language = "English",
isbn = "978-1-4411-5325-8",
pages = "55--80",
editor = "Julia Paulson",
booktitle = "Education and Reconciliation. Exploring Conflict and Post-conflict Situations.",

}

Smith, A 2011, Education and Reconciliation in Northern Ireland. in J Paulson (ed.), Education and Reconciliation. Exploring Conflict and Post-conflict Situations.. pp. 55-80.

Education and Reconciliation in Northern Ireland. / Smith, Alan.

Education and Reconciliation. Exploring Conflict and Post-conflict Situations.. ed. / Julia Paulson. 2011. p. 55-80.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

TY - CHAP

T1 - Education and Reconciliation in Northern Ireland

AU - Smith, Alan

N1 - Reference text: BBC News (2000), ‘Prison officers leave the maze’, Friday 29 September. Available from: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/northern_ireland/948161.stm (Accessed 10 August 2010). Consultative Group on the Past (2009), Report of the Consultative Group of the Past. Belfast: Consultative Group on the Past. Cormack, R., Gallagher, A. M., and Osborne, R. (1991), ‘Religious affiliation and educational attainment in Northern Ireland: The financing of schools in Northern Ireland’, in Sixteenth Report of the Standing Advisory Commission on Human Rights, Report for 1990-1991, Annex E. London: HMSO. Cormack, R., Gallagher, A. M., and Osborne, R. (1992), ‘Access to grammar schools’, in Seventeenth Report of the Standing Advisory Commission on Human Rights, Annex E. London: HMSO. Department of Education for Northern Ireland (1998), Towards a Culture of Tolerance: Integrating Education. Bangor, Co Down: Department of Education. Department of Education for Northern Ireland (1999), Towards a Culture of Tolerance: Education for Diversity. Bangor, Co Down: Department of Education. Fay, M. T., Morrisey, M. and Smyth, M. (1999), Northern Ireland’s Troubles: The Human Costs. London: Pluto Press. Gallagher, A. M., Osborne, R. and Cormack, R. (1993), ‘Community Relations, Equality and Education,’ in A. M. Gallagher, R. Osborne and R. Cormack (eds) After the Reforms: Education and Policy in Northern Ireland. Aldershot: Avebury. Hamber, B. and Kelly, G. (2004), A Working Definition of Reconciliation. Occasional paper published by Democratic Dialogue, Belfast. Interim Commissioner for Victims Survivors (2007), Support for Victims and Survivors – Addressing the Human Legacy. Belfast. Magill, C., Smith, A. and Hamber, B. (2009), The Role of Education in Reconciliation. Report for EU Peace and Reconciliation Fund. Coleraine: University of Ulster. Morrissey, M. (2005), ‘The role of economic development in peace building: Some thoughts on PEACE II, Prosperity: A part of peace?’, Learning from the economic experience of PEACE II, Learning from PEACE II, Vol. 2, Community Relations Council. Murray, D. (1992), ‘Science and funding in Northern Ireland grammar schools: A case study approach’ in Seventeenth Report of the Standing Advisory Commission on Human Rights, Annex G. London: HMSO. Northern Ireland Curriculum (2006), Statutory Requirements for Local and Global Citizenship. Available from: http://www.nicurriculum.org.uk/docs/key_stage_3/areas_of_learning/statutory_requir ements/ks3_citizenship.pdf (Accessed 8 August 2010). Northern Ireland Life and Times Survey, University of Ulster and Queens University Belfast. Annual survey available online at: http://www.ark.ac.uk/nilt/ (Accessed 8 August 2010). Northern Ireland Office (1998), The Agreement, Belfast: NIO. Available from: http://cain.ulst.ac.uk/events/peace/docs/agreement.htm (Accessed 8 August 2010). O’Connor, U. (2008), Evaluation of the Pilot Introduction of Education for Local and Global Citizenship into the Revised Northern Ireland Curriculum, Coleraine: University of Ulster. Available from: http://unesco.ulster.ac.uk/PDFs/summaryreport.pdf (Accessed 6 August 2010). OCED-DAC (2007), Principles for Good International Engagement in Fragile States and Situations. Available from: http://www.oecd.org/dataoecd/61/45/38368714.pdf (Accessed 8 August 2010). Osborne, R. D. (1986), ‘Segregated schools and examination results in Northern Ireland’. Educational Research, 28 (1), 43-50. Paulson, J. (2010), ‘Truth commissions and national curriculum: The case of the Recordándonos in Peru’, in S. Parmar, M.J. Roseman, S. Siegrist and T. Sowa (eds) Children and Transitional Justice: Truth-Telling, Accountability and Reconciliation. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press. Paulson, J. (2006), ‘The educational recommendations of Truth and Reconciliation Commissions: Potential and practice in Sierra Leone’. Research in Comparative and International Education, 1(4), 335-350. Smith, A. (2003), ‘Citizenship education in Northern Ireland’. Cambridge Journal of Education, 33(1), 15-31. Smith, A. (2001), ‘Religious segregation and the emergence of integrated schools in Northern Ireland’. Oxford Review of Education, 27(4), 559-575. Smith, A. and Dunn, S. (1990), Extending Inter School Links: An Evaluation of Contact between Protestant and Catholic Pupils in Northern Ireland. Coleraine: Centre for the Study of Conflict, University of Ulster. Smith, A. and Magill, C. (2009), 'Reconciliation. Does Education have a role?' Shared Space: A research journal on peace, conflict and community relations, 8(1), 5-15. Smith, A. and Robinson. A. (1996), Education for Mutual Understanding, The Statutory Years. Coleraine: Centre for the Study of Conflict, University of Ulster. Smith, A. and A. Robinson (1992), Education for Mutual Understanding: Perceptions and Policy. Coleraine: Centre for the Study of Conflict, University of Ulster. Special EU Programmes Body (2007), Peace III. EU Programme for Peace and Reconciliation 2007-2013. Northern Ireland and the Border Region of Ireland Operational Programme. Belfast: EU. Standing Advisory Commission on Human Rights (1987, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1992) Annual Reports. London: HMSO. UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre (2010), Children and Transitional Justice. Florence: UNICEF. Available from: http://www.unicef-irc.org/research/resource_pages/trans_justice/ (Accessed 8 August 2010). Woodrow, P. ‘Strategic Analysis for Peacebuilding Programs’, cited by Church, C. and Rogers, M. (2005), Designing for Results: Integrated Monitoring and Evaluation in Conflict Transformation Programs. Washington: Search for Common Ground.

PY - 2011/3/31

Y1 - 2011/3/31

N2 - This chapter identifies new challenges for reconciliation that have emerged in Northern Ireland since the signing of the Belfast (Good Friday) Agreement in 1998. It is more than a decade since the agreement, so there are few children with direct experience or memory of the conflict. Nonetheless, there is a current debate about the role that education might have in helping new generations understand what happened in the past and recognise legacies of the conflict. A significant amount of the work on reconciliation has been funded by the European Union (EU) Programme for Peace and Reconciliation in Northern Ireland which has provided more than €2 billion since 1995. As this chapter shows, there are some lessons to be learned from having a reliable and sustained flow of international funding, particularly in terms of being able to adapt priorities and funding mechanisms to changing circumstances. Although this approach also carries some dangers such as the development of a peacebuilding economy that cannot be sustained into the post-conflict phase. The current phase, PEACE III (2007-13), has adopted a working definition of reconciliation developed by Hamber and Kelly (2004) with €225 million being provided for a range of initiatives with particular emphasis on ‘reconciling communities’ and ‘contributing to a shared society’ – these imply a role for education in reconciliation in Northern Ireland. In addition, whilst there is no formal truth and reconciliation commission in Northern Ireland, the government established an independent Consultative Group on the Past that published a report in 2009 with 31 recommendations on acknowledging and dealing with the past. Such initiatives, which call on education to accomplish a number of ambitious goals, pose significant challenges for educators within post-conflict societies. Education is often identified as a means toward future reconciliation, but usually with little definition about what this means conceptually or in practice.However, the case of Northern Ireland also provides examples of efforts by local actors such as parents, teachers, NGOs and community activists that emerged in th emidst of conflict, that are now providing a basis for peacebuilding in the post-conflict period. The chapter identifies some of these various initiatives and draws conclusionsabout the challenges still to be addressed.

AB - This chapter identifies new challenges for reconciliation that have emerged in Northern Ireland since the signing of the Belfast (Good Friday) Agreement in 1998. It is more than a decade since the agreement, so there are few children with direct experience or memory of the conflict. Nonetheless, there is a current debate about the role that education might have in helping new generations understand what happened in the past and recognise legacies of the conflict. A significant amount of the work on reconciliation has been funded by the European Union (EU) Programme for Peace and Reconciliation in Northern Ireland which has provided more than €2 billion since 1995. As this chapter shows, there are some lessons to be learned from having a reliable and sustained flow of international funding, particularly in terms of being able to adapt priorities and funding mechanisms to changing circumstances. Although this approach also carries some dangers such as the development of a peacebuilding economy that cannot be sustained into the post-conflict phase. The current phase, PEACE III (2007-13), has adopted a working definition of reconciliation developed by Hamber and Kelly (2004) with €225 million being provided for a range of initiatives with particular emphasis on ‘reconciling communities’ and ‘contributing to a shared society’ – these imply a role for education in reconciliation in Northern Ireland. In addition, whilst there is no formal truth and reconciliation commission in Northern Ireland, the government established an independent Consultative Group on the Past that published a report in 2009 with 31 recommendations on acknowledging and dealing with the past. Such initiatives, which call on education to accomplish a number of ambitious goals, pose significant challenges for educators within post-conflict societies. Education is often identified as a means toward future reconciliation, but usually with little definition about what this means conceptually or in practice.However, the case of Northern Ireland also provides examples of efforts by local actors such as parents, teachers, NGOs and community activists that emerged in th emidst of conflict, that are now providing a basis for peacebuilding in the post-conflict period. The chapter identifies some of these various initiatives and draws conclusionsabout the challenges still to be addressed.

KW - education

KW - conflict

KW - war

KW - peace

KW - reconciliation

KW - Northern Ireland

KW - European Union

M3 - Chapter

SN - 978-1-4411-5325-8

SP - 55

EP - 80

BT - Education and Reconciliation. Exploring Conflict and Post-conflict Situations.

A2 - Paulson, Julia

ER -

Smith A. Education and Reconciliation in Northern Ireland. In Paulson J, editor, Education and Reconciliation. Exploring Conflict and Post-conflict Situations.. 2011. p. 55-80