Education and Training Boards Ireland (ETBI) welcomes the announcement of three new primary schools to open in September 2021. Prior to the opening of any school, a patronage competition is run by the Department of Education that seeks the views of parents in the area as to who they would like to run the school. Our colleagues in City of Dublin ETB (CDETB) are applying to become the patrons of the new school in Dublin 2/Dublin 4 and our colleagues in Dublin and DunLaoghaire ETB (DDLETB) are running to become the patrons of the new schools in Donaghmede/Howth/Dublin 13 and Sallynoggin/Killiney/DunLaoghaire North . If the ETBs are successful, these schools will open as Community National Schools (CNSs).
CNSs are state, co-educational, multi-denominational schools underpinned by the core values of; excellence in education, care, equality, community and respect. There are currently 27 CNSs across the country. They have an excellent reputation in the areas they serve as they are schools for all children in the community that prioritise both excellence in teaching and learning and looking after the wellbeing of the children attending them. The Programme for Government has committed to increasing the number of CNSs in Ireland by 250 by 2030.
It has already been decided that the new school in Donaghmeade/Howth/Dublin 13 and the new school in Dublin 2/Dublin 4 will open as gaelscoileanna, regardless of which patron wins the competition. Therefore, they will provide education through the medium of the Irish language. ETBs are the largest provider of education through the medium of Irish at post-primary level and are also the patron of a CNS which is in a Gaeltacht area. ETBs look forward to increasing the number of CNSs which operate through the medium of Irish.
In addition, ETBs have a long-established tradition of the provision of high-quality, inclusive education. As well as being patrons of 27 CNSs, they are also patrons of 245 post-primary schools and a wide range of further education and training services. They are also very experienced in the establishment of new schools which is imperative as there is so much to be done between now and the schools opening in September 2021 to children.