001. Separate Church and State

Despite our country’s education system beginning with a non-denominational model, Ireland’s primary education system is almost completely controlled by church bodies, with 96% of schools having a religious body as their patronage. 90% of schools have the Catholic Church as their patron body. All of the rest but 3 have a Christian patron body. In … Read more001. Separate Church and State

What is the biggest issue for Community National Schools?

The Community National School model is being lauded as the ideal solution for primary education in Ireland as a compromise to the near-monopoly that all churches have on primary education. Started by then Fianna Fáil Education Minister, Mary Hanafin in 2007, the CNS model is supposed to be a “happy medium” between denominational education and multi-denominational (now … Read moreWhat is the biggest issue for Community National Schools?

What’s the difference between the CNS model and the Catholic model?

Another government, another disappointing day for education. Jan O’Sullivan has left her mark and I bet Ruairi Quinn is ruing the day he decided to address patronage in schools. Meanwhile Mary Hanafin is probably rubbing her hands in glee. It looks like despite all the flaws and all the secret deals with the Catholic Church that … Read moreWhat’s the difference between the CNS model and the Catholic model?

Why Ticking “No Religion” Shouldn’t Matter in Schools

For people without a religion, the census always draws up conversation. Mostly, it’s to do with the position of the “No Religion” box on the form or the implication in the question that one has a religion. However, many people and organisations such as Atheist Ireland and the Humanist Association of Ireland use the census to ask … Read moreWhy Ticking “No Religion” Shouldn’t Matter in Schools

#GE16 and Primary Education: Religion in Schools

As we come up to the General Election, I’m looking at the various parties and their stances on aspects of primary education. While I am personally very glad that religion in schools is top of the list in terms of public interest, I know that most primary teachers don’t believe it is the biggest issue facing us. … Read more#GE16 and Primary Education: Religion in Schools

Multidenominational: A long word, long-abused

The education landscape used to be an easy one to maneuver. Between the 1920s and 1978, you could go to a primary school and it would be easy to identify it: Catholic, Church of Ireland (or some branch of Protestantism) and then there was a Jewish school. Everything changed when Educate Together came along in … Read moreMultidenominational: A long word, long-abused

Which dark stain will be removed in 2016?

Ask most teachers who the best education minister was and you’ll most likely hear the name, Donogh O’Malley. He has gone down in education folklore most notably for announcing free secondary education in Ireland. The timing of the announcement coincided with Ireland’s 50 year commemoration of 1916 and O’Malley is quoted as saying that the … Read moreWhich dark stain will be removed in 2016?

Media Focuses on Religion during Maths Week

There were a number of stories in the newspapers and media this week surrounding the question of religion in schools. This topic seems to be rearing its head more and more often. The last explosion of interest from the media were stories about children who had not been able to enrol in schools due to the religious beliefs … Read moreMedia Focuses on Religion during Maths Week

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