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Coláiste na Rinne – Oíche Eolais

January 30, 2017

Scoil chónaithe atá i gColáiste na Rinne ar son daltaí idir deich mbliain d’aois agus trí bliana deag d’aois. Má tá suim agat i ngaelscolaíocht, bheadh fáilte romhat ar an gceathrú lá deag de mhí Feabhra le eolas a fháil agus taispéantas scoile a fheiceáil.

Minister Bruton announces new plans to accelerate provision of multi- and non-denominational schools

January 30, 2017

The Minister for Education and Skills, Richard Bruton TD, today announced new plans aimed at providing more multi-denominational and non-denominational schools across the country, in line with the choices of families and school communities.

The Programme for Government commits to increasing the number of multi-denominational and non-denominational schools with a view to reaching 400 by 2030. On current population growth trends, new schools will account for approximately one third of the additional multi-denominational schools required to hit this target, so transfers of existing schools from religious patronage will be required to hit the target.

(Following patronage processes which give significant weight to parental demand, the vast majority of new schools which are established come under multi-denominational patronage, and these processes will continue).

The new plans, which will provide additional multidenominational schools in either of the nation’s languages, will be implemented alongside the current process, which was commenced through the Forum on Patronage and Pluralism under previous Minister Quinn. That process identified a total of 28 areas where schools should be transferred through amalgamations and closures. This process will continue alongside the new process being announced today.

The new process will draw the lessons from previous model, which have only delivered a total of ten transfers to multidenominational schools. Those lessons include:

  • The importance of working with the current landowner, school staff, school communities and local communities on a collaborative and open basis
  • The downsides of amalgamation, closure and opening a new school as a model, given all the complexities, including legal complexities, that can be involved
  • The possibilities of live transfers, whereby a school continues in being, with staff, pupils and the majority of the board of management remaining in place (if they wish) but transfers from the patronage of one organisation to another
  • The value of a lease arrangement from the current landowner to the new patron, removing the need for complicated property transfer

Minister Bruton and his Department have consulted widely with the main school landowners, with different patron groups as well as a range of education stakeholders before developing the plans announced today. The Minister has written to the Catholic Bishops to outline his proposals and seeking their nominations to working groups which will need to develop detailed protocols for patronage reassignment implementation and school amalgamations.

Minister Bruton today also announced that Kildare and Wicklow Education and Training Board and Educate Together have agreed to start discussions in relation to a possible partnership to provide Educate Together second-level provision in the Newbridge area in Co. Kildare. Minister Bruton welcomed this development as an excellent example of constructive cooperation between patron bodies in introducing greater choice and diversity to the system along the lines already successfully concluded between City of Dublin ETB and Educate Together for Clonturk Community College in Whitehall in Dublin.

The Minister reiterated his view there is no one model that will provide the answer to this complex issue, there is room for a number of different multi- and non-denominational to respond to different parental wishes through the different process now in place, including existing providers like An Foras Patrunachta, the Community National Schools and Educate Together, in the context of an expanding population and increasing demand for multidenominational education.

Since Minister Bruton took office nine months ago, a total of 20 additional multidenominational schools have been established or sanctioned.

Minister Bruton said:

“My central target as Education Minister is to achieve the best education service in Europe. This means being the best at supporting disadvantaged students, the best at providing the skills needed for a growing economy, and also the best at dealing with complex issues around diversity, inclusion and parental choice.

“I believe that we should acknowledge the role of religious organisations in providing a system of national education for nearly two centuries. I also believe that a desire on behalf of many parents to have their children educated within their faith is welcome and should be respected.

“However Ireland has changed and continues to change. 96% of our primary schools are under religious patronage; only 66% of marriages last year were in religious ceremonies. While this may not be a direct proxy for choice of schooling, it is clear that there are many more parents seeking multidenominational education for their children than there are places in multidenominational schools.

“This new process for supporting transfers of schools to multidenominational patrons, in response to the wishes of local families, is based around principles of transparency and cooperation. We recognise the massive contribution that existing patrons have made to their communities over many years, and also the equally major contribution that local communities have made to developing their local school.

“Where the need for a transfer to a multidenominational patron is identified by surveys, the existing landowner, in cooperation with the local school community, will decide what multi-denominational patron to transfer to. The transfer will be by way of a live school transfer, with existing staff remaining in place, where this is the wish of the parties involved. In most cases the new patron will lease the building from the landowner.

“I believe this process is of major importance to the future of education in Ireland, and to providing a system which reflects the changing needs of families. I urge all parties to engage in this process constructively, with a view to reaching solutions that achieve the wishes of all involved”.

There will be two main stages to the new process:

1. Firstly, the identification phase. The Education and Training Boards, as the State’s local education authorities, will manage this phase. The ETBs will each identify towns or areas where there is likely to be demand from families for greater diversity and work with pre-school services to establish evidence of this demand among the cohort of pre-school parents, via surveys.

There will then be discussions between individual ETBs and the existing landowners concerning the possible transfer of existing schools to accommodate this demonstrated demand for diversity.

Each ETB will then prepare a report for the Department outlining the levels of demand within their functional areas and the responses of the existing patrons as to how this might be accommodated through the reconfiguration of existing school provision. This report will be published on the Department’s website, with quarterly reports on implementation.

2. Secondly, the implementation phase. In the event that the identification phase reveals a level of demand for multidenominational schools sufficient to justify transfer of at least one school from denominational to multidenominational patronage, a process will commence to give effect to that. There will be a role for the existing landowner in consulting with local community and school interests and take into account proposals from different prospective multidenominational patrons.

In most cases it is envisaged that transfer would be by way of voluntary live school transfer, rather than the amalgamation and closure model which was followed previously, with all of the complications and legal difficulties and time delays involved. It is expected that in many cases the school property will be leased from the existing landowner.

The Identification Phase will be carried out by the relevant ETB as follows:

Identification of demand for diversity in individual towns/areas on the basis of views collected from parents of pre-school children in those areas.

Discussions between ETBs and existing patrons concerning accommodation of the demonstrated demand for diversity.

Reports from ETBs to the Department of Education and Skills outlining levels of demand for diversity within their functional areas and the responses of patrons as to how this might be accommodated within existing school provision.

Publication of reports from ETBs on demand for diversity and responses of patrons and follow-up by way of quarterly updates on progress.
The Implementation Phase will involve existing Patrons as follows:

Consultation with local schools and community on accommodating the demand for diversity by transferring patronage of an existing school to a new multi- or non-denominational patron.

Agreement on transfer to a new patron following discussions with all potential patrons and school/community consultation.

Application to the Minister for transfer of patronage of the selected school.


2017 marks five years since the publication of the report of the Forum on Patronage and Pluralism in the Primary Sector.

The Forum was guided by a highly expert Advisory Group and held public sessions and consulted widely on the issues arising.

The Forum’s Report was published in 2012 and recommended steps to ensure that the education system at primary level could provide a sufficiently diverse number and range of primary schools to cater for children of all religions and none.

One of the principal recommendations was on divesting of school patronage, where it was envisaged that existing patrons would make buildings surplus to requirements available for greater diversity if sufficient demand for a school under different patronage could be demonstrated.

However, the reality is that, despite very substantial survey work and negotiations undertaken by the Department, only ten new multi-denominational schools have been established under the Patronage Divestment process over that period.

Patronage of schools involves ownership of schools and school property and in the consultation process, it became clear that divestment is seen as taking away property from the patron or trustees as landowners.

The landowner has misgivings and there is no way forward without meeting these concerns

The common misconception, that the State could simply withdraw funding from denominational primary schools and use it to establish newmulti-denominational and non-denominational schools in the same building instead, is exactly that – a misconception. The ownership and control of school property is acomplex issue, both constitutionally and in terms of property law and rights.

Typically, it can involve religious trusts, trustees, religious orders, the bishops both as landowners and school patrons and the State.

The ownership of the vast majority of school property by religious orders and trusts is an historical legacy of the way in which Ireland’s education system developed.

In some cases where church authorities have been amenable to transferring property, local parish communities have resisted divestment on the basis that they have contributed to these valuable community assets over the years.

Another difficulty with progressing patronage divesting was that the process relied substantially onschool premises becoming available as a result of school amalgamations or closures which, in themselves, can be lengthy, costly and contentious processes.

In devising this roadmap to accelerate the transfer of patronage in order to increase the number of non-denominational and multi-denominational schools, the Minister proposes to concentrate on the reconfiguration of existing school provision.

By this the Minister means facilitating voluntary transfers of existing schools to alternative, non-denominational or multi-denominational patrons in areas which demonstrate a demand.

Scléip Gael Linn 2017, Croaobhchomórtas i gCluain Tarbh!

January 30, 2017

Beidh craobhchomórtas Scléip Gael Linn 2017, an comórtas tallainne le béim ar na healaíona comhaimseartha, ar siúl in amharclann Clasach, Cluain Tarbh ( www.clasac.ie ) Déardaoin, 2 Feabhra 2017. Beidh suas le 300 aisteoirí, ceoltóirí, rinceoirí agus amhránaithe ó iar-bhunscoileanna lán-Ghaeilge agus Gaeltachta ó Dhún na nGall go dtí Daingean Uí Chúise, mar aon lena gcuid múinteoirí agus tuismitheoirí, i láthair don ócáid.
Cuirfear tús leis na comórtais ag 11.00a.m. agus beidh críoch leis an lá ar a 5.30p.m. Bhí ceithre réamhbhabhta réigiúnacha ar siúl ag i rith mhí na Samhna/mí na Nollag –i Muineachán, i nGaillimh, i mBaile Átha Cliath agus i Mainistir Fhear Maí, Co. Chorcaí, ag a roghnaíodh na hiomaitheoirí don chraobhchomórtas.
I measc na moltóirí a bheidh ann ar an lá mór, beidh an léiritheoir drámaí, Síle Ní Dhuibhne, an damhsóir, Breandán de Gaillí, agus na ceoltóirí agus cumadóirí, Méabh Ní Thuathaláin, Edel Ní Churraoin, Enda Reilly agus Pádraig Ó Conghaile ( nó MC Muipéad )!

Bronnfar duaiseanna ar na buaiteoirí i ngach rannóg agus Gradam Scléip ar an amhránaí/ceoltóir aonair nó ar an ngrúpa is mó a sheasann amach. Don chéad uair chomh maith, bronnfar duais Gradam Cheoil Nós don amhrán nua-chumtha is fearr sna comórtais amhránaíochta, canta ag duine aonair nó ag grúpa. Is iad Seán Ó Ceallaigh, Gael Linn, agus Niamh Ní Chróinín, Raidió Rí Rá, a bheidh mar láithreoirí ar an ócáid. Táimid ag súil le han-lá – beidh fáilte mhór roimh lucht féachana !

Group of six retain a perfect record

January 30, 2017

FEE-paying schools continue to dominate when it comes to sending students to third level, figures compiled over the past eight years reveal.

Out of more than 700 schools nationwide, just six have maintained a 100pc record in sending students on to third level in that time. Just one non-fee-paying school has maintained that perfect record since 2009.

By comparing the percentage of students who were admitted to a university after studying in a school with a perfect record, it is possible to distinguish which is the best performer overall.

Figures compiled by the Sunday Independent show Glenstal Abbey, Co Limerick, has emerged as the county’s best-performing school, up two places from third on last year’s list.

It pipped Presentation Brothers College in the Mardyke, Cork, to the honour by a narrow margin of just 0.08pc.

An analysis of the data shows Glenstal Abbey has sent proportionally more of its students to third level, with 292 boys sitting the Leaving Certificate at the boarding school since 2009.

Digging deeper it is possible to see that the school, which charges a €18,950 seven-day boarding fee, sends a majority of its students on to Dublin-based universities.

University College Dublin has admitted 79 Glenstal students since 2009, Trinity College admitted 68 and another 12 former pupils went on to study in Dublin City University.

Dublin leads the way as the county with the highest number of schools to maintain a perfect record in the past eight years. Three of the six schools to send all of their students on to college since 2009 are located in the capital – an unsurprising statistic given the size of its population. It is also the only county in Leinster with schools that have maintained a perfect record in the past eight years.

All of the remaining schools with 100pc records are in Munster, with counties Limerick, Cork and Tipperary represented.

Glenstal Abbey sent 80.82pc of its students to university over the past eight years. The remaining students went on to study in other colleges. Presentation Brothers College in Cork sent 80.74pc of its students to university in the same period.

Both are fee-paying, all-boys schools.

Some 75pc (662) of the 883 pupils who sat the Leaving Certificate in Presentation Brothers College went on to take up courses in University College Cork. Cork Institute of Technology is also well served by Presentation Brothers College, taking in 154 students from the school since 2009.

The school slipped one place in the Sunday Independent league table over the past 12 months to second place, while the next best performing school – Mount Anville School, in Dublin 14 – slipped one place to third.

Mount Anville remains the capital’s highest-placed school and is also the country’s best performing all-girls school, with 79pc of its students placed in universities between 2009 and September last year.

Former pupils have tended to stay in the capital – with more than half (52pc) of the 831 students who went through the school since 2009 moving on to study courses in University College Dublin. Trinity College took in 164 Mount Anville pupils and 111 went on to the Dublin Institute of Technology.

Colaiste Iosagain, Stillorgan, is fourth overall and the second placed Dublin school and all-girls school.

It claims the title of the country’s best performing non fee-paying school.

Cistercian College in Roscrea, Co Tipperary, is the fifth best school on the list with all of its 338 former pupils securing college places in the past eight years – with 71pc placed in universities.

St Mary’s College in Rathmines, Dublin 6, is the last remaining school to hold a perfect record when it comes to sending students on to third level. Some 60pc secured places in universities since 2009.

Sunday Independent

(Gaeilge) Stiúrthóir Naíonra á earcú i gCorcaigh

January 27, 2017

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(Gaeilge) Suirbhé ar Oideachas Iar-bhunleibhéil lán-Ghaeilge

January 26, 2017

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Minister Bruton commences 4-week consultation process on plans to address the role of religion in school admissions

January 25, 2017

Minister Bruton has announced a 4 week consultation period beginning from today 24th January until 20 February 2017. The consultation document is available on the Department’s website at the following link: “The role of denominational religion in the school admissions process and possible approaches for making changes”

On 16 January 2017, Minister for Education and Skills Richard Bruton TD made a speech on the subject of the role of religion in the admissions process to primary schools.

In the speech the Minister stated that he believes:

  • it is unfair that a non-religious family, or a family of a different religion, living close to their local publicly-funded school finds that preference is given to children of the same religion as the school living some distance away
  • it is unfair that parents, who might otherwise not do so, feel pressure to baptise their children in order to gain admission to the local school.

The Minister set out four possible approaches for dealing with this subject and stated his intention to seek views from people and groups who might be impacted by the proposed changes or have views on the proposed changes.

The Minister is interested in hearing the views of the groups who stand to be impacted by changes as well as any members of the public with views on this issue.

Among the issues which might be considered in this area include: While this process is not aimed at dealing with the issue of language/Gaelscoileanna, could your preferred approach have potential unintended impacts on that issue?

Submissions should follow the format set out in the consultation document, and should be forwarded to the following e-mail address admissions_religion@education.gov.ie

Please note that feedback will be subject to the Freedom of Information Acts (details available at www.education.ie/en/The-Department/FOI) in which case particular information exempt under the Freedom of Information Acts, such as personal contact details and commercially-sensitive information, may be omitted.

As this is a public consultation submissions may in any event be published on the Department’s website and by submitting feedback you are indicating your consent to this approach and waiving your anonymity.

(Gaeilge) Le Chéile Trí Ghaeilge!

January 24, 2017

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(Gaeilge) Dianranganna Mata & Gearmáinise ag teastáil i mBaile Átha Cliath

January 24, 2017

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(Gaeilge) Comórtas Lámhscríbhneoireachta An Post

January 23, 2017

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