Educate Together has welcomed the announcement last week that the Department of Education and Skills has chosen Athlone as a candidate for the ‘reconfiguration’ of a local primary school.
Parents in Athlone have long been lobbying for an Educate Together national school and this announcement has renewed hopes that they will finally be able to access an equality-based education for local children.
Jennifer Buttner, Regional Development Officer for Educate Together, said that they welcomed the news and confirmed their willingness to take part in the process of delivering an Educate Together primary school.
“Educate Together is glad to see that Minister Bruton is making plans to increase school choice for parents in Athlone. We recognise that families in Athlone have long wanted an Educate Together national school and are willing to work with all stakeholders to facilitate bringing Educate Together to the town,” she said,
Minister Bruton’s plan requires that the local education and training board, in this case Longford and Westmeath ETB. carries out surveys to ascertain whether or not parents of selected pre-school children want an alternative to religious-run schools.
If so, the existing patron of the school, mostly likely the diocese, will be consulted and further surveys and discussions will determine an alternative patron.