Independent Review of education presents major opportunity says Egan

Alliance Education spokesperson Connie Egan MLA has said the Independent Review of Education presents a major opportunity to reform our Education System for the benefit of children and young people.

Education Connie Egan

The Independent Review was set up by the Executive in September 2021 following a commitment from the New Decade New Approach agreement.

Ms Egan met the Review Panel along with Alliance colleagues Kellie Armstrong and Nick Mathison, both MLAs for Strangford.

Speaking after meeting members of the Review Panel the North Down MLA said: “This Review is the opportunity to reform our education system to give all children the best possible start in life.

“My colleagues and I highlighted our concerns around provision for Special Education Needs and how the Statementing process can be made more efficient.

“The Interim report acknowledges that post-primary is controversial but does not elaborate on what work is being done to consider a single, inclusive education system without the need for academic selection. This Review is the opportunity for a major overhaul of education, particularly relevant during the current funding crisis, when difficult decisions will be needed around sustainability of smaller schools.

“The financial crisis will also have a major impact on the decisions young people make about their educational choices, so the Review needs to ensure there is an appropriate mix of academic and vocational courses available. Strong links are needed with regional and higher education colleges, which already offer a wide range of these qualifications.

“To help build a united community, children should be taught together in a single, integrated education system that delivers equality of opportunity so that every child can develop their unique ability, personality and potential.”