Six County Premier Calls for End to Segregated Education

factual

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BBC News - Robinson slams education system 'apartheid'

Great to see a six county pol - and such a high profule one - finally taking on the vested interests to challenge the divided status quo - a status quo where children of different religions grow up divided by walls and sent to different schools. I have been to the six counties and seen these divisions af first hand. Whatever people may think of the past reasons for these divisions, now is surely the time to bridge that awful divide. If not now , when?
 


DerryBee

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I entirely agree with Peter Robinson's sensible sentiments. Is it just me, or has anyone else been really impressed by Robinson's performance as First Minister in recent months?
 

peter123

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I'd have been more impressed had he suggested the religious indoctrination of children was removed from all schools.

Instead he is just going along with the petty sectarian jibes.
 

st333ve

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I never bought the whole education argument, I think it's easy to hold up as a problem but I honestly don't think educating Catholics and Protestants in the same school would change anything socially or politically.
Is there any evidence to suggest so, or is it merely a lazy sound bite?
Is it something that is easy to point at as a prime cause of social problems - when really it probably isn't?

Peoples attitudes and political opinions have been passed down for hundreds of years through all sorts of changes and they remain to this day.

Get rid of the evil cults and glorifications of the gun and people might stop believing their at war with each other.
Putting them in a room together won't change their beliefs, their political beliefs are engrained through generations and education simply does not penetrate this.

I think it's a red herring, I could be wrong but I am sure that many high profile bigots have came from integrated schools.
 

Molly Maguire

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Maybe all the children could get the chance to attend a school like the one Lord Craigavon was taught at.

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SevenStars

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People go on and on (especially factual) about mixed education as if its some panacea to all of the six counties ills despite the fact that on its own it could actually make things worse.

What we seriously need to be thinking is how to dismantle the culture of hate.
 

factual

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Good discussion folks.

No I don't think of it as a panacaea. However I think as part of a wider strategy including housing and other aspects of segragation, it is an important part of the way forward. Yes people will need to do this in a way sensitive to BOTH sides. Yes attitudes have been handed down for generations. The piont, however, is to change that. If not now, when?
 

Cruimh

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Good discussion folks.

No I don't think of it as a panacaea. However I think as part of a wider strategy including housing and other aspects of segragation, it is an important part of the way forward. Yes people will need to do this in a way sensitive to BOTH sides. Yes attitudes have been handed down for generations. The piont, however, is to change that. If not now, when?
I agree.
 

SevenStars

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Good discussion folks.

No I don't think of it as a panacaea. However I think as part of a wider strategy including housing and other aspects of segragation, it is an important part of the way forward. Yes people will need to do this in a way sensitive to BOTH sides. Yes attitudes have been handed down for generations. The piont, however, is to change that. If not now, when?
Look at places like Birmingham where Sikhs and Muslims go to the same schools.

They still hate and fight each other.

Its a pointless and very probably counter-productive move UNLESS you address the culture of hate first (and good luck with that because the Brits who created it in the first place arent that interested to put it mildly seeing it go...).
 

DerryBee

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Speaking from personal experience, I believe that integrated education – whilst not immune from criticism – is infinitely better than segregated schooling, particularly in such a divisive society as Northern Ireland. I attended two integrated schools and the degree of respect and mutual understanding between students belonging to both sections of Northern Irish society – in addition to other faith communities – was far greater and durable than it was, for example, in the non-integrated school that my brother attended as a child. I am delighted that Robinson has spoken so forcefully in regards to the issue of integrated education tonight because, irrespective of its own flaws, shared education is undoubtedly a powerful weapon against the scourge of sectarianism and hatred because children grow up in a shared environment in which no one is perceived as negatively different. The only problem that I ever experienced at both integrated schools was not in relation to tension between students – which was very rare – but rather from people and paramilitary groups which deliberately targeted our schools because they felt threatened by integration – surely, this is a powerful enough message that integration is the way forward for it is through integration and education that a child’s perception of the world and society is shaped – and, in my opinion, it should be fully embraced as a logical and constructive step forward in bettering our society and ensuring a healthy future for our children.

:D
 

TrueBlue84

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BBC News - Robinson slams education system 'apartheid'

Great to see a six county pol - and such a high profule one - finally taking on the vested interests to challenge the divided status quo - a status quo where children of different religions grow up divided by walls and sent to different schools. I have been to the six counties and seen these divisions af first hand. Whatever people may think of the past reasons for these divisions, now is surely the time to bridge that awful divide. If not now , when?
Despite your 6 county jibe, which I though the moderators were to cut down on, this is once again an excellent thread.

Go further still and take religion out of schools altogether.

My one fear regarding integrated schooling is the bastardization of sports. Fearful of treading on the other communities toes they half ass 3-4 sports rather than putting the focus on one winter team sport and one summer team sport.
 

factual

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Despite your 6 county jibe, which I though the moderators were to cut down on, this is once again an excellent thread.

Go further still and take religion out of schools altogether.

My one fear regarding integrated schooling is the bastardization of sports. Fearful of treading on the other communities toes they half ass 3-4 sports rather than putting the focus on one winter team sport and one summer team sport.
I think in terms of sports that there may need to be consortia of schools, to get the economies of scale.

By the way "six counties" is not intended as a jibs, so please do not interpret it as such.
 

picador

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Welcome call from Robinson. As has been pointed out integration education is not a panacea. Forced integration will not work. However if politicians can take the lead that is a positive sign.
 

Northern Voice

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I disagree that religion should be taken out of schools. I think it is part of everybody's heritage - both in Northern Ireland and the south - which should be preserved. Paradoxically, you could say its one thing everybody shares - an attachment to a Christian faith. The role of religion in schools should be evaluated, however. No church should have an overbearing influence on a school, but the school should have a role in educating children in matters of religion. I am sceptical that segregated schooling is a bad thing at the current time. The problem with education in Northern Ireland nowadays is that it is scared to educate children on their cultural and political heritage - this results in children who have this abstract concept of being different from 'the other side' without really knowing why. To integrate mutually suspicious communities, especially at a volatile stage of their development as people, is unwise. Integration will only be achieved whenever we shake off this fear of telling the truth - only then will recognition and mutual understanding truly take place.
 

TrueBlue84

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I disagree that religion should be taken out of schools. I think it is part of everybody's heritage - both in Northern Ireland and the south - which should be preserved. Paradoxically, you could say its one thing everybody shares - an attachment to a Christian faith. The role of religion in schools should be evaluated, however. No church should have an overbearing influence on a school, but the school should have a role in educating children in matters of religion. I am sceptical that segregated schooling is a bad thing at the current time. The problem with education in Northern Ireland nowadays is that it is scared to educate children on their cultural and political heritage - this results in children who have this abstract concept of being different from 'the other side' without really knowing why. To integrate mutually suspicious communities, especially at a volatile stage of their development as people, is unwise. Integration will only be achieved whenever we shake off this fear of telling the truth - only then will recognition and mutual understanding truly take place.
Religious education including the full Christian ethos should be a parental matter carried out in the home not the babysitters who look after the kids between 8am and 4pm everyday.
 

TrueBlue84

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I think in terms of sports that there may need to be consortia of schools, to get the economies of scale.

By the way "six counties" is not intended as a jibs, so please do not interpret it as such.
Hmm perhaps to make the most out of the facilities but then larger, full schools with proper facilities may be able to get some of those economies.

Take the Dungannon area, from what I remember there is the Royal School Dungannon, Drumglass High School, (combined maybe 1000 pupils?) Integrated College Dungannon (300-500?) St Patrick Grammar and the non Grammar (1500+?), St Ciarans in Coalisland, Donaghmore Convent.

7 odd secondary schools in a town with a population of 10,000?

This isn't even taking into account the more rural schools towards Augnacloy and Ballygawley

Should the Rugby Clubs and Football clubs get more involved with the schools?

I dont mention the GAA as I know how could a set up they have with the parishes
 


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