[***Moderator's note: The message below is a Council of Europe press release that may interest list members.***] 27.10.2003 - Palestinians and Israelis involved in preparing and overseeing school textbooks heard how education authorities in Northern Ireland are trying to overcome the problems of teaching in a divided society at a hearing of the Assembly's Sub-committee on the Middle East this week. The Assembly's rapporteur on the situation in the Middle East, Mikhail Margelov (Russia, EDG), hailed the "spirit of tolerance" that prevailed during the meeting, on suppressing provocative language and incitements to hatred and violence in school textbooks and the media. "What makes me optimistic is the level of self-criticism we have heard," he said, encouraging both sides to continue trying to build bridges with Council of Europe help. Participants heard examples of provocative language used in current Palestinian and Israeli schoolbooks, but agreed on the importance of teaching tolerance. "All of us must give attention to what we tell our children if we want peace to last," said Ilan Shalgi, who chairs the Education and Culture Committee of the Israeli Knesset. He pledged to demand the ending of state subsidies for Ultra-Orthodox schools using textbooks that were not "in the frame of consensus". Basri Ahmad Salmoodi of the Palestinian Authority's Education Ministry denied that Palestinian textbooks incited violence - but said the education system should support the "national aspiration" of the Palestinian people. He pointed out that the violence of everyday life in the Middle East made the task of educators difficult: "The hatred that kids see in their daily lives is far worse than anything they read in their schoolbooks." Cheryl Stafford, from Northern Ireland's education authorities, explained how history curricula for schoolchildren had been revised in the "divided society" of the province, where history had been used as propaganda, and it was difficult to reconcile polarised views. "We try to show students that historical judgments depend on the point of view of the person making the judgment. Therefore, our textbooks always contain a range of different viewpoints. We value a divergence of opinions, rather than seeking absolute consensus. Teaching history is not about the transmission of one view." Source: http://www.coe.int/T/E/Communication%5Fand%5FResearch/Press/News/2003/20031027_teaching_children.asp ======== Global Human Rights Education listserv ======== Send mail intended for the list to <email@example.com>. Archives of the list can be found at: http://www.hrea.org/lists/hr-education/markup/maillist.php If you have problems (un)subscribing, contact <firstname.lastname@example.org>. **You are welcome to reprint, copy, archive, quote or re-post this item, but please retain the original and listserv source.
[Reply to this message] [Start a new topic] [Date Index] [Thread Index] [Author Index] [Subject Index] [List Home Page] [HREA Home Page]