Professor Joanne Hughes from the Queen’s Centre for Shared Education in Belfast has been appointed as the first ever UNESCO chair in globalising a shared education model for improving relations in divided societies.
Joanne will work with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) helping other countries develop shared education programmes, based on her experience in Northern Ireland.
Her role will be to take forward a model of shared education that can be used as a template around the world, developing best practice and contributing to government policy within the UK and beyond.
Professor Hughes and her team have already advised education authorities in divided societies like Cyprus, Israel, Palestine and Macedonia on how best to educate children from different backgrounds together.
Lauri McCusker, Director of the Fermanagh Trust which administers the Rural Centre for Shared Education said “We congratulate Joanne on this prestigious honour. Through her role with UNESCO Joanne will be able to extend her exemplarily work internationally. The accolade is further evidence of the global value of shared education and recognises that the work taking place in Northern Ireland can be used as a model throughout other countries.”