Schools and patronage


A chara, – Educate Together’s assertion that the new plans to transfer patronage “are unfair and unjust” (January 31st) underlines the fact that patronage as a model of management for this State’s schools is outdated and only exacerbates the problem that divestment sets out to solve. Patron bodies now seem to be vying for control of schools. There is evidence that having a diverse range of school types can result in higher levels of socioeconomic segregation. There continues to be merit in the national school model of 1831. Replacing the imbalanced patronage system of the 21st century with a plethora of new ones is not the solution. It runs counter to the judgment of the European Court of Justice in the Louise O’Keeffe case (2014), which found that the State has ultimate responsibility for schools and not their subsidiary agents. – Yours, etc,



Co Meath.