Educate Together, the multi-denominational school patron, will manage three of the five new schools announced today by the Department of Education and Skills. Two schools will open in Blanchardstown and Mulhuddart this September while the third will open in Ashbourne, Co. Meath in September 2012.
Commenting on the announcement, Educate Together CEO Paul Rowe said “Educate Together is delighted with this announcement. It marks another step on the road to an education system that meets the needs of parents and children in Ireland. I am heartened by the Department’s decision to award three out of the five schools they announced today to our patronage. Educate Together will immediately start work to ensure that these schools make a great contribution to their communities. We actively encourage parental involvement in school life and we will be liaising closely with our schools, start-up groups and parents of prospective pupils in Blanchardstown, Mulhuddart and Ashbourne over the coming months.
The Department of Education and Skills has a list of areas where new schools for an anticipated 80,000 new primary admissions will be needed. All parties in the recent general election maintained a commitment to maintaining investment in education. One of the key challenges for the incoming Minister for Education and Skills will be to address the demand from a growing number of parents for places in Educate Together schools. Educate Together has opened 19 new schools in the last five years but much is to be done to make multi-denominational education a viable choice for families all over the country.
Paul Rowe again “We have significant demand for places in our current schools and have established demand in towns around the country â from Tramore to Dundalk. All of the schools we have opened in the last five years are well established and enjoy healthy enrolments. Choice is a good thing for Irish education and we look forward to working with our fellow patron An Foras Pátrúnachta, who will be opening the other two schools announced today.’