(1832 – 1912)
Margaret Byers’ vision was ‘to provide for girls an education ... as thorough as that which is afforded to boys, in schools of the highest order’. Having herself been widowed with a baby son at a young age, she realised the importance of providing young women with an education which would enable them to earn a living, rather than schooling them in lady-like accomplishments to please their husbands. She set up a school for girls in Belfast and fought to get young women into university. Pupils from her school were among the first students at Queen’s University Belfast.
Margaret Byers’ innovative approach changed the face of education for girls in Ulster.