Opening panel - Barbara Malak-Minkiewicz (IEA)

During the opening panel Barbara Malak-Minkiewicz, manager of the IEA Secretariat in Amsterdam, expressed her concern not for the young people who are protesting in New York, Barcelona, London or Bologna, but for the non-participants, who are disadvanteged through a lack of education, for the alienated youth. As a former member of Solidarność she perceives the protesting as her partners, they struggle to change the world, and therefore the world would change. However, there are also those who fail to take part in the discussion. Thus civic education should have an impact on disadvantaged groups as long as they are in schools, when educators are still able to 'grab' them. The major aim is to make them have an opinion and learn to express it.

Barbara Malak-Minkiewicz argues that, contrary to the common belief, educationally deprived young people are able to learn effectively but the question is how we organise education. Citizenship education should, first of all, teach skills that are usefull in social and political activities. We should pay attention not to consider citizenship education as the simple transfer of knowlegde.


Disadvantaged Groups
Conference Day: