Minister Quinn asks parents to indicate which patron bodies they would like to see running primary schools in their area
Parents of all children aged 0 to 12 years in 38 areas across Ireland are being asked by the Minister for Education and Skills what patrons they would like to see operating their local primary schools.
Surveys are going live today (Monday 14th January) and are an expansion of pilot surveys on primary school patronage which were conducted late last year in five towns.
The survey can be accessed on line via www.education.ie and parents or guardians of primary school going children and 0 to 5 year olds in the 38 towns and suburbs (list below) are being urged to fill it in. They will need to have their PPS number in order to complete the survey; however, these details are only being used for verification purposes.
The aim of the survey is to establish the level of demand from parents for diversity of school patronage in each of the towns. At present, some 96% of primary schools are under church patronage, with more than 90% or approximately 3,000 schools under the remit of the Catholic Church. This survey initiative follows on from the recommendations of the Forum on Patronage and Pluralism in the Primary sector.
If parents indicate they would like a wider choice of patron, then the Department of Education and Skills (DES) will ask existing patrons to come up with a plan to transfer some schools to other patron bodies.
“This is an historic opportunity for parents to have a real say in the type of school they wish to send their children to, be it denominational, multi-denominational, all-Irish or other,” said Minister Ruairí Quinn T.D.