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Institute aims to smooth teaching of slave trade

Teachers will receive help in bringing the difficult story of slavery to the classroom from a new learning institute devoted to the subject.

The foundation of the International Slavery Teachers' Institute in Liverpool, once a centre of the slave trade, was announced this week. The move follows a 2009 conference in Ghana of school workers from the UK, the US and Africa. The first of the institute's eight-day courses will be held this summer.

Slavery became a compulsory part of the secondary history curriculum in 2008.

Officials in Liverpool made a formal apology 10 years ago for the city's part in the trade and Liverpool is now the venue for the world's first International Slavery Museum. Staff there work with teachers and will run the institute in partnership with Liverpool Hope University.

About 20 teachers from across the UK will be chosen to take part in the institute, which runs from July 26 to August 4.

They will be taught by specialist historians and museum staff and will have the option to complete work to be accredited by Liverpool Hope University and contribute towards a masters degree.

Paul Khan, deputy director of education for National Museums Liverpool, said: "The institute is designed to give teachers the knowledge and skills to be able to talk about slavery confidently to their pupils ...

"This is not like teaching maths or English: it involves sensitivity and care."

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