Together at Last

Together at last 1

Back in May it was confirmed that a new primary school would be established in the Ringsend and Sandymount catchment area. On September 26th, the Department of Education announced that the patronage (the administration and day-to-day running) of the school had been won by D4 Educate Together.

The school will come into operation next September with two classes (Junior and Senior infants, 58 spaces in total) initially for the 2014 – 2015 school year. One class will be added each year as pupils progress.

Sandymount resident Jessica Ryan will now assume the role of school manager, having been chair of the D4ET start-up committee, which she formed with local parents back in 2011. “Absolutely delighted,” is how she describes her feelings on her campaign’s success.

Educate Together schools employ a multi-denominational ethos, with no focus on any one belief system. Ryan was schooled in America, where religion is kept separate from school life, and wishes her children to have a similarly secular education.

It’s a philosophy she believes many Irish parents are now also adopting. “I’ve spoken to a lot of parents who want the religious element of their children’s lives to be a personal journey and let school be purely for schooling,” she tells NewsFour, “Even traditional Irish Catholic families are now looking for something different.”

The next challenge for D4ET is to find a home for their school. Ryan tells us the organisation is working hard to find a site locally, ideally in the Grand Canal and Ringsend area. “Right now we’re working on the assumption it will be a temporary location for 2014 with the hope of moving into a permanent site in following years,” she says.

Close to 900 children have been pre-enrolled, illustrating the demand for places in the area.

TD Kevin Humphreys, who supported D4ET’s bid, calls the announcement “A fantastic development for our local community.”

Pictured: D4 Educate Together Committee and kids.

By Eric Hillis