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Religion et éducation en Irlande du Nord

In Northern Ireland the majority of Protestant children attend state controlled schools, while most Catholic children attend Catholic maintained schools. The latter are owned by the Catholic Church but operated with public financial assistance. Thus there is in effect a system of state supported separate education.
‘Integrated schools’ taking a mixture of Protestant and Catholic children have existed since 1981. There are now some 60 such schools, about two-thirds of which are primary schools. Only 6.5% of the school population attends an integrated school.
Following an official request in 1991, the four largest denominations – the Catholic, Presbyterian, Anglican and Methodist churches – prepared a core syllabus for religious education. The topics were those on which there was agreement, with additional material – whether confessional or on non-Christian religions – to be taught outside the core. It was adopted by the Department of Education for Northern Ireland in 1993.
To date few ‘controlled’ schools (mostly serving the Protestant population) have included material on other religions in the curriculum. There has been some coverage of world religions in Catholic maintained schools, at least beyond the primary level.

D 11 septembre 2012    ADavid Voas

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