herald

Friday 15 November 2019

Islamic group applies to be patron of post-primary schools

Education minister McHugh
Education minister McHugh

The Islamic Foundation of Ireland is among several patron bodies being considered for a new post-primary school as part of the reform of school patronage.

Parents and guardians are being urged to give their views on the patronage of six new post-primary schools to be built by next September.

The six new schools are being set up to meet the demand from growing populations in Dublin, Meath, Kildare and Wicklow.

Parents of children who are due to enrol in post-primary school from 2020-2024 in these areas are being asked to complete the online survey, select which model of patronage they prefer and whether they would prefer English or Irish as the language of instruction.

The new schools are being established as part of the Government's investment in educational diversity as more than 90pc of State-funded primary schools in Ireland have a Catholic ethos. The government plans to build 44 new schools by 2022.

Minister for Education and Skills Joe McHugh said the six new post-primary schools will be sited in Blanchardstown, Goatstown, Clonskeagh and Harold's Cross in Dublin as well as Enfield/Kilcock in Kildare/Meath and Kilcoole/Greystones.

The Islamic Foundation of Ireland has applied for patronage in the Blanchardstown area as well as Dublin and Dun Laoghaire Education and Training Board, Educate Together and Scoil Sinead Limited.

Mr McHugh said: "We are fortunate to have a growing population and a Government that is investing heavily in new schools.

Diversity

"But we need parents' support to ensure we reflect the views of families in the areas where we have younger and growing populations.

"It is a great opportunity for mothers and fathers and guardians to help to shape the education of the future.

"The wishes of parents and guardians, together with the extent of diversity already available in these areas, will be key to deciding the type of schools we will have in the future.

"I urge as many people as possible who live in the areas and have children going to post-primary in the next few years to make their voices heard."

The online survey for parents can be accessed at patronage.education.gov.ie.

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