23 Jul

The IEF welcomes Northern Ireland Affairs Committee report

The Integrated Education Fund (IEF) welcomes the publication yesterday (22 July 2019) of the report from the NI Affairs Committee’s (NIAC’s) inquiry into education funding in Northern Ireland. The IEF’s written contribution to the inquiry included a call for a reform of the structure of the NI education system to rationalise provision and enable better use of resources. We also called for community participation in decisions on education planning and delivery.

The Fund is, therefore, particularly pleased by the Committee’s comment:
We saw there is a clear need to reduce duplication across the education sector and for consolidation of the school estate. Witnesses were clear that alongside the immediate funding pressures on education, the complicated structure of education in Northern Ireland meant that money was not being spent in the most efficient way. (more…)

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4 Jul

Peace Prize nomination for integrated education campaigners

The IEF and NICIE are honoured and delighted that the organisations have been jointly nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize 2019.

The nomination, from eminent politicians and academics shows an international appreciation of the work of parents, campaigners and schools to develop integrated education in Northern Ireland. It also recognises the daily work within integrated schools to actively and intentionally celebrate religious and cultural integration in our divided society. (more…)

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2 Jul

Aspiration for integration reflected in growth across integrated schools

On Friday (28 June) the results of a parental vote at Seaview Primary School in Glenarm showed 95% support for the school to go through the process termed “transformation” and so become officially integrated. Seaview PS could become the first Catholic Maintained school to be transformed to integrated status.

Barry Corr, principal of Seaview Primary School commented
“These are very exciting times for the parents and everyone connected with Seaview PS, Glenarm. A 95% vote gives the governors the support to proceed with a Development Proposal to transform us to controlled integrated status. Parents in the area have already responded to our plans and we will see over 50% more pupils starting Seaview in September.

I want to thank the parents, staff, governors and the local community for all their support along our journey. The Community Conversation organised by the University of Ulster, the www.integratemyschool.com website and The Electoral Reform Service all helped with our success to date. IEF, NICIE, EA and the Department of Education have all given us guidance to ensure we have reached this juncture successfully. Thank you” (more…)

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27 Jun

Worldwide Philanthropy Conference highlights impact of Integrated Education

Integrated education took centre stage when The Ireland Funds held their Worldwide Conference in Belfast this month.

Chairman John Fitzpatrick addressed leading political, community and business leaders at the conference gala in St Anne’s Cathedral on Friday (21 June) and spoke of his desire to see more children and young people learning together in NI schools. The audience, including DUP leader Arlene Foster, heard John Fitzpatrick say:
“I want to see integrated education included in any future Programme for Government in Northern Ireland.” (more…)

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27 Jun

Parents vote to bring integration to East Belfast primary school

Harding Memorial Primary School in the Cregagh area of east Belfast has taken a major step towards becoming the first integrated school in the area. Parents have voted overwhelmingly to take the school on the path to becoming officially integrated, through the process termed “transformation”.

The school’s principal and board wanted to ballot parents after they found evident interest in integration among the school community. The vote (run by the Electoral Reform Services between 04 and 25 June 2019) showed 87% support for integration in the responses. (more…)

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