A blog post by Cahir O’Doherty who is the longtime arts editor and feature writer for The Irish Voice, Irish America magazine and IrishCentral.com. He has reported on the culture, politics, and heritage of Irish America for over a decade. O’Doherty is a graduate of Yale University and the University of Ulster.
Ninety-five percent of pupils in Northern Ireland still attend either a maintained Catholic school or what they call a controlled school (mostly Protestant but open to all faiths). Both are funded by the state to varying degrees. Campaigning parents have established the few integrated schools there are in the North, with no help at all from the main churches. There are currently 62 integrated schools over all, which comprise 20 second-level colleges, and 42 primary schools. Poignantly, there are just 19 integrated nursery schools, so from birth most children are segregated.
You’d be surprised how many people don’t have a problem with this. Political and religious leaders, the people with the power to bring about positive change, usually prefer to sit on their hands. I’m not sure what sort of society they think they’re protecting. (more…)Read More