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Parents' joy as primary school gets thumbs-up

Dublin city centre is to get a new primary school.

Educate Together has been given the go-ahead to set up a new national school in the Portobello area of the south inner city in Dublin 8.

It is one of two new Educate Together schools that will open in Dublin in September in a development that will be welcomed by parents.

John Holohan, a spokesperson for Educate Together, told the Herald that it has now received sanction from the Department of Education to open the school in Portobello.

He said officials from the department are "at an advanced stage in securing accommodation for the school".

Mr Holohan said it had been allocated a roll number to open the new school.

Educate Together runs multi-denominational national schools which teach the national curriculum. More than 15,000 pupils are educated nationally in 65 schools.

The latest school was sanctioned by the department in "response to the substantial and long standing demand for an Educate Together school in the Dublin 8 area".

He said that the sanctioning of the roll number gave Educate Together the legal sanction to put in place the structures necessary to open the school.

Demand

"The first stage of this, which involves the recruitment of a principal will commence immediately," Mr Holohan said.

Parents, including members of the Portobello Educate Together start-up group, have been campaigning for a school in the area.

Demand for places in Educate Together schools has been particularly acute in Dublin city, where its schools are heavily oversubscribed.

Confirmation is awaited of where the new school will be located within the Dublin 8 region, as well as how many pupils it will accommodate.

It brings to three the number of new Educate Together schools that will open this year.

"One will be opened in Firhouse in Tallaght this September, and another will open in Rochestown, Co Cork," he said.

These two schools were sanctioned last year by the Department.

Mr Holohan said that there is a "strong, robust demand for Educate Together schools".

In deciding where new schools will be located, the department uses geographical targeting data to see where there will be significant growth in the population. The infrastructure is then put in place.

fdillon@herald.ie


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