Fee paying schools dominate fast track to Uni…

Give much of our focus on education reform in Northern Ireland there’s a fascinating piece on the front page of the Irish Times today, which notes that whilst the private grind schools in the Republic no longer predominate at the top of the league table. Though it should be noted that the grind schools have an open enrolment policies. It’s the growing fee paying and Gaelscoil sectors that dominate the tracks into university:

Today’s list also tracks students going to college in Britain. Schools like St Columba’s and Wesley College in Dublin, many of whose students have traditionally gone on to further study abroad, are ranked highly. Schools along the Border are also given credit for students attending higher education in Northern Ireland.

The new list underlines the dominance of fee-paying schools and Gaelscoileanna when it comes to progression to third level in Dublin. Of the top 30 feeder schools in Dublin, only one – Muckcross Park in Donnybrook – is non fee-paying and non-Gaelscoil.


  • Of the top 30 feeder schools in Dublin, only one – Muckcross Park in Donnybrook – is non fee-paying and non-Gaelscoil.

    This is the situation that Catriona Ruane needs to avoid. Is there any evidence she has even started thinking about it.

  • interested

    Do you really need to ask that question? Its clear that Catriona hasn’t thought about much… how she’ll get her ‘plans’ through the Assembly or even what her ‘plans’ are.

    Its all about some attempt to be as anti-academic selection as possible. She doesn’t seem to mind selecting children on their parents ability to pay, to buy the right house or anything else. She doesn’t even mind a Northern Ireland education system which selects children on what religion they are. Socialism indeed.

  • George

    Another reason why fee-paying schools are so prevalent in the Republic is that with free university many middle-class parents now invest in their children’s education at secondary level.

  • Mick Fealty

    Can I suggest that if there is no academic selection then money and parental patronage may come to be the primary decider on whether students get to university? Reading Caitriona’s piece on Friday, there is nothing that explicitly excludes that. But neither is it explicitly included.

  • gaelgannaire

    I have to say I am pleasantly amazed that Coláiste Iosagáin has made it to number three on that very exclusive list.

    Coláiste Eóin at number 10.

    I amazes me further however that the Dept. of Eadóchais has been putting pressure on Hanafin to accept a policy ensuring that no more Gaelcholáistí will be build.

    Simply defies reason in my view.

  • Are bonus points still awarded for doing exams in Irish? Presumably that’s why Gaelscoils are doing well?

  • George

    gaelscoileanna aren’t doing well, they are excelling.

    The marking system works in favour of those who don’t excel rather than those who do.

    If you get 80% then the bonus will be 10% of the remaining 20% so you get a mark of 82%.

    If you get 40% then it’s 10% of 60% so you get 46%.

    Gaelscoileanna do well because of the high standard of teaching.

  • George – I didn’t know that’s how the system works. Interesting.

  • I am delighted, but not surprised, that my son’s school Colaiste Ailigh, Letterkenny is number 4 in the overall list of Feeder Schools.

    I just attended the annaual Parent teacher night.

    The staff are excellent.

    It is a small school based in portakabins.

    My son loves the school and so he should.