Saturday 3 December 2016

School admissions under Fianna Fáil will be based on locality, not religion

Published 15/01/2016 | 02:30

Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin (left) with Charlie McConalogue, FF’s education spokesman, and Mary Fitzpatrick, party candidate for Dublin Central, at the launch yesterday of the Fianna Fáil Education Policy Blueprint ‘Securing the Future’. Photo: Tom Burke
Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin (left) with Charlie McConalogue, FF’s education spokesman, and Mary Fitzpatrick, party candidate for Dublin Central, at the launch yesterday of the Fianna Fáil Education Policy Blueprint ‘Securing the Future’. Photo: Tom Burke

Children will be allocated school places based on their locality and not their religion under Fianna Fáil's education policy.

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The party said yesterday that newly drawn-up catchment areas would underpin the admissions policy if the party was in government.

Donegal TD Charlie McConalogue, the party's education spokesman, also promised to hire 5,500 new teachers and reduce class sizes to a maximum of 23 students.

The introduction of no-fry zones and the prohibition of vending machines would also be introduced.

And there would be a significant focus on the hiring of guidance counsellors, while 300 new therapists would also be employed.

Some €373m would be spent on improving the education system, Mr McConalogue said, adding that the plan had been costed through parliamentary questions.

Speaking at the policy launch in the Alexander Hotel in Dublin yesterday, Mr McConalogue said the Fine Gael/Labour Government had been guilty of damaging the education system in recent years.

"Many of the remarkable advances made by previous governments in building a quality and fair education system have been eroded by Fine Gael and Labour," he said.

"We need a government with fresh ideas, which understands the importance of education for securing our children's and our country's future. I proudly present this policy as a blueprint for securing such a future."

Irish Independent

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