Toleration usually denotes the acceptance of differences in lifestyles, religious beliefs, etc. Recognition is a stronger notion, as it contains an additional element of respect and a willingness to listen to contradicting others. The relation between toleration and recognition becomes more complex when reciprocity is lacking. One concrete example is the demand, by some religious groups, to educate their children in separate schools, following standards that do not celebrate differences. It is here argued that G.W.F. Hegel’s theory of mutual recognition and the notion of Unhappy Consciousness help to understand the implications of reciprocity. Recognition is here seen as a continuous process, realized in daily life. Separate education is not compatible with this view.

Keywords: recognition, hegel, tolerance, education