Monday 19 March 2018

Ian O'Doherty: Time to excommunicate religion from our schools

A boy on the day of his first Holy Communion. Picture posed
A boy on the day of his first Holy Communion. Picture posed

It's the story that has just about everything when it comes to exposing the fault lines you can find in any rapidly changing society.

An unidentified Gaelscoil has been ordered to pay €750 after the Equality Authority found that the school's principal had been guilty of religious discrimination against a young Protestant boy in the run up to his class's First Communion. The EA heard testimony that the principal, who has now been placed on 'adminsitrative leave', was rude towards the child as his Catholic classmates and the school went on the record to state that they "made an unreserved apology to the complainant's parents in relation to the alleged treatment by the principal regarding the treatment of their son".

Amongst the delightful allegations, we learned that the principal made the lad do homework when the others didn't have to and there was also the bizarre and historically debatable assertion that Protestant were 'that rebel lot'.

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