“If this clarity isn’t given, the uncertainty remains.”

Interesting comparison between the reaction from the Council for Catholic Maintained Schools and the reported statement by the Northern Irish Catholic bishops to the Northern Ireland Education minister’s ‘visionary’ statement. First the CCMS

The Council welcomes the direction of travel indicated in the Ministers statement to the Assembly.

In particular, the clarity for pupils, parents and teachers in the primary sector on the ending of the Transfer Test now provides the flexibility to fully embrace the Revised Northern Ireland Curriculum.

The Council recognises that further guidance will be required on the details of how new arrangement for transferring children at 11 and 14 will operate and how the schools can be structured to deliver for the educational needs of all children.


The Council agrees that 14 is a more appropriate age at which to make important subject and course choices and that the delivery of provision can vary to meet local circumstances under Area based Planning.


The bishops’ statement said: “Much, however, remains to be clarified by the minister and her department.

“There is an urgent need for clear details as to how pupils will transfer both at 11 and at 14. “If this clarity isn’t given, the uncertainty remains.”

And what about those other RPA proposals on Education reform?.. or is that where the minister’s proposed ‘Community’ selection will come into play..

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  • Frank Sinistra


    Firstly: the CCMS is the body that actually has influence and a remit on Education. The Bishops get to talk about God to believers.

    Secondly: you missed the most profound element of the CCMS statement, the bit that makes me think Christians aren’t completely lost to society “The changes being proposed are necessary to ensuring social and economic development by creating some of the conditions necessary for reducing the poverty gap and linking educational outcomes more closely to emerging economic needs.”

    When the Catholics are amongst the most openly revolutionary and empowering its a topsey-turvey world.

    (btw – bah humbug down with religion in schools, its a very bad thing)

  • Pete Baker


    You are free to point to whatever you think is important in the statement.. ‘visionary’ or otherwise.

    And I’ll blog what I see as important in both that statement and the reaction from the lobby group that is the Northern Irish Catholic bishops.

  • Bob Wilson

    This thread like the previous one on this issue entirley misses the most salient point – regardless of how sincerely Ms Ruane believes in her vision it has no chance of becoming reality.

  • Pete Baker

    By all means make that point, Bob.

    However, there would be a degree of futuring involved.

  • Frank Sinistra


    Just pointing out the Bishops have next to no say. The CCMS is the body that counts.

    (and neither should have any influence on education imnsho)

  • Pete Baker

    “Just pointing out the Bishops have next to no say.”

    Of course they don’t, Frank, of course they don’t..

    Apart from other, isolated, instances..

  • Tkmaxx

    Frank Sintra
    The two Catholic bodies responsible for catholic education are both Chaired by Bishops. CCMS and the Northern Bishops Catholic Education Committee. so get real.


    Frank Sinistra:

    “Firstly: the CCMS is the body that actually has influence and a remit on Education. The Bishops get to talk about God to believers. ”

    That’s just silly talk Frank. You need to do a little more research I fear.

  • Hogan

    I believe the CCMS’s rollover to the department very early on in this process damaged the power of the bishops to negotiate on other matters.

    It should have been their ‘decommissioning’, gay adoption would have been dead in the water if this one was still up in the air.

    Before anyone labels me a homophobe i am not expressing a view on gay adoption, merely pontificating on the Catholic church underplaying its negotiating strength.

  • Elvis Parker

    ‘negotiating strength’
    Mmmh pupil numbers are falling rapidly and you need all the help the Dept can give and CCMS is due to be abolished – not exactly a position of strength

  • Hogan


    That was what i was talking about.

    They rolled over so easy that DENI smelled weakness.