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Denominational education may be protected says Ombudsman

Posted by SchoolDays Newshound on 12/12/2013. Denominational education may be protected says OmbudsmanTags: Education And Politics Parenting

The Ombudsman for Children, Emily Logan, has published her submission to the Department of Education on draft legislation on school admissions. Minister Quinn had published the general scheme of the Education (Admissions to Schools) Bill in September, to provide a new regulatory framework for school enrolment procedures and to provide a new appeals mechanism.

In her submission published yesterday, Ms Logan is recommending that denominational schools should no longer have the right to discriminate in favour of enrolling children on the basis of their religion. However, the Ombudsman is mindful of the protection afforded to denominational education in the Constitution. She says “this principle could be incorporated by means of derogation that could be sought from the Minister for Education and Skills where the operation of the principle of equal access to publicly funded education gives rise to a situation in which a school’s student body may no longer reflect the school’s denominational character”.

In her report, Ms Logan is also calling for an end to preferential access for children of past pupils. She says that “putting children without an intergenerational connection with a school at a disadvantage visà-vis those with such a connection when there is high demand on limited spaces is not justifiable”

Ms Logan’s full report and recommendations can be viewed here


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