IPPN President and Minister for Education agree that the time is right to start a ‘conversation’ on the time given to religion in our Primary Schools

IPPN President and Minister for Education agree that the time is right to start a ‘conversation’ on the time given to religion in our Primary Schools

Speaking at the opening of the annual Irish Primary Principals’ Network Conference at Citywest Convention Centre, Dublin, on Thursday evening, January 28th which is being attended by over 1,100 Primary School Principals, the Minister for Education and Skills, Jan O’ Sullivan, announced that she has rescinded Rule 68 of the Rules for Primary Schools. This rule affirms the primacy of religious instruction in our 3,300 primary schools.  Minister O’Sullivan said ‘Rule 68 was a symbol of our past, not our future. The language of the rule was archaic and I am glad it is gone’ She says, ‘currently 30 minutes of each school day is allocated to religion. Is that enough, or is it too much. We want children to develop a strong ethical spirit but we also want them to learn many other things. We devote less than half of the time to PE than we do to Religion’.

Earlier in the evening, IPPN President, Maria Doyle, also touched on the topic of Religion when she referred to the fact that over 8 out of 10 principals feel that the time given to the teaching of Religious Instruction should be reduced and reallocated to subjects such as PE, SPHE and the Sciences. 

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