Alliance Education spokesperson Chris Lyttle MLA has said there is an urgent need for the rationalisation of the education system here.
Mr Lyttle was speaking after the release of a report entitled Isolated Together, which states mergers between controlled and maintained primary schools would benefit pupils, as well as saving money. It focuses on 32 pairs of schools ‘often only yards apart,’ which they says cost an extra £2.3 million a year to maintain.
“This report echoes what a number of previous reports have already told us, which is while there is urgent need for financial investment, there is also an urgent need for the rationalisation of education provision across Northern Ireland,” said the East Belfast MLA.
“That is not just because of financial reasons but also for curriculum provision and social cohesion. Alliance wants to see an integrated system of education, where children are not separated at the age of four or five based on their community or religious background.
“Alliance has long called for a full root and branch review of the education system here to make it more sustainable and allow every child the opportunity for a quality education. Rationalising along the lines suggested in this report would be a good start along that road.”