So concerned by the lack of second-level options available to them next year, a sixth class pupil from Newbridge Educate Together school has written a letter to Minister Bruton.
I am from Sixth class in Newbridge Educate Together National School, Co. Kildare.
I am writing this letter to you because I want a second level Educate Together in Newbridge or surrounding areas.
I attended an Educate Together school because it has a multi-denominational ethos. It was important to my parents that I was taught in a school where everyone’s religion is respected and learned about. As a result of my upbringing and my education I respect everybody’s rights to choose their own religion without discrimination. Unfortunately, this ethos isn’t carried forward into secondary schools in my location, and I am not afforded the same choice.
In my area there is a shortage of places for secondary schools. These are eight primary schools in my area, but only three secondary schools that are available to me, pus one more that is 8 miles away. The statistics show that these secondary schools cannot cater for all those children that are moving from primary to secondary.
These are my questions for you, the Minister of Education.
- Why did you have the great foresight to build extra primary schools to cater for our increasing population, but not have the forethought to realise that all of these children would move on to secondary school?
- As diversity has increased from our growing population why has there not been an increase in the numbers of multi-denominational secondary schools?
- In seven years time I hope to go to a third level education where I will have multiple choices available to me, why is the same choice not available to me at second level?
I am an 11 year old who has learned to respect the different beliefs and attitudes of my friends and extended family, in return they show me that same respect for my choices. Why, as Minister for Education, can you not afford me the same respect by providing choice for my second level education?
Cc An Taoiseach, Enda Kenny
Martin Heydon, Fine Gael TD
Fiona O’Loughlin, Fianna Fail TD
Well done – we think you have perfectly summed up the stress and concerns of children and their parents in this area.
Are you a concerned parent or child? Make your voice heard.
Talk to your local TDs. Email your concerns to the Minister’s office.