Welcome to open symposium and Book Launch: European Perspectives on Islamic Education and Public Schooling!

Book coverWelcome to open symposium and Book Launch: European Perspectives on Islamic Education and Public Schooling!

Islamic religious education (IRE) in Europe has become a subject of intense debate during the past decade. There is concern that states are doing too little or too much to shape the spiritual beliefs of private citizens. State response to the concern ranges from sponsoring religious education in public schools to forgoing it entirely and policies vary according to national political culture. In some countries public schools teach Islam to Muslims as a subject within a broader religious curriculum that gives parents the right to choose their children’s religious education. In the other countries public schools teach Islam to all pupils as a subject with a close relation to the academic study of religions. There are also countries where public schools do not teach religion at all, although there is an opportunity to teach about Islam in school subjects such as art, history, or literature. IRE taught outside publicly funded institutions, is of course also taught as a confessional subject in private Muslim schools, mosques and by Muslim organisations. Often students who attend these classes also attend a publicly funded “main stream school”.

Read more about the symposium here.

About the book

This volume brings together a number of researchers for the first time to explore the interconnections between Islamic educations and public schooling in Europe. The relation between Islamic education and public schooling is analysed within the publicly and privately funded sectors. How is publicly funded education organised, why is it organised in this way, what is the history and what are the controversial issues? What are the similarities and differences between privately run Islamic education and “main stream” schooling? What are the experiences of teachers, parents and pupils? The volume will be of interest to scholars of Islam in Europe, policy makers of education and integration and teachers of religious education.

The book is edited by Jenny Berglund, professor in religious education at Stockholm university.

The symposium consists of short presentation of each of the chapters in the book. After each presentation there will be a possibility to discuss and ask questions to the authors. The official book launch will take place at 4 pm where professor Jenny Berglund will make a short presentation of the book and professor Masooda Bano, Oxford University will comment on it.


Attendance is free of charge but please notify us if you intend to join us so that we can calculate coffee and lunch: register here.

For more information contact: ire-europe.hsd.su

Program 3rd of December

The program is available here for download: Program 3rd Dec (156 Kb) .



Welcome by Jenny Berglund!


‘Islamic’ Education between State and Community: Frameworks and New Directions

– Farid Panjwani, Ayman Agbaria.

State-Funded Muslim Schools in Ireland: Insights and Perspectives

 – Youcef Sai

Teaching Islam and about Islam in the Spanish Public System: The Confessional and the Cultural Approach to a Controversial Heritage

– Elena Arigita

Public School in France: The Place of Islam and Muslim’s Languages

 – Samim Akgönul

11.00 Coffee

 Identity Development of the Two First Islamic Primary Schools in the Netherlands

– Bahaeddin Budak, Cok Bakker, Ina ter Avest

Publicly Funded Islamic Education in Bosnia and Herzegovina

– Amina Isanovic Hadziomerovic

Between Old Traditions and New Diversities: Islamic Religious Education in Poland

– Agata S. Nalborczyk, Konrad Pe, dziwiatr

(Re)discovering One’s Religion: Private Islamic Education in Lithuanian Muslim Communities

– Egdu-nas Racˇ ius

How Secular Educational Policies have Changed the Contents of Religious Education Curricula and Teachers’ Training Programmes in Modern Turkey

 – Mahmut Zengin

13.00 Lunch

A ‘Home of Study’: A UFO (Unidentified Foreign Object) in the Dutch ‘Pedagogic Civil Society’?

 – Ina ter Avest

Character and Values Education in English Schools: What Can Private Islamic Faith and State Funded Public Schools Learn from Each Other?

– Farah Ahmed

State Neutrality and Islamic Education in Sweden

– Ailin Abdullah, Jenny Berglund

Traditional Islamic Education and Mainstream Schooling in Contemporary England: Grasping the Nature of the Former and Researching the Relationship and Interaction with the Latter

– Bill Gent

Creating Coherence in Education for British Muslim Pupils

– Karamat Iqbal

Mainstream Secular and Quran-based Islamic Education, Student Perspectives on the Relation between Two Disparate Forms

– Jenny Berglund

15.30 Coffee

Official Book launch: European Perspectives on Islamic Education and Public Schooling (Equinox)

Short presentation of the book by the editor professor Jenny Berglund, Stockholm university.

Comment on the book by professor Masooda Bano, University of Oxford.