Calls in Cork for more investment in secondary education 

Calls in Cork for more investment in secondary education 

Ireland ranks in last place out of 35 countries for investment in second-level education as a percentage of GDP and has done so for several years. Stock image. 

COLÁISTE Chríost Rí principal Padraig Mac An Rí has echoed calls from incoming ASTI President Eamon Dennehy for enhanced investment in second-level schools.

Mr Dennehy recently succeeded Cork native Ann Piggott in the role and has called on the Government to commit to sustained investment in second-level education to enable the education system to prosper.

Mr Mac An Rí agreed, highlighting the crucial role education plays in society. 

“Education is the cornerstone of the success of this country," he said. "Every success in this country is due to the standard of education that we have. 

"Improving the standard of education is for the betterment of everybody. That has been proven time and time again.

"In Chríost Ri everybody gets the best opportunity that we can give them.” 

Mr Dennehy pointed out that Ireland ranks in last place out of 35 countries for investment in second-level education as a percentage of GDP and has done so for several years. 

Mr Mac An Rí said schools should set the ‘bar’ in terms of facilities and resources. 

“I think most principals would agree with this message," he said. "Schools always need more resources. They should have the equipment and the resources needed. They should have the best in everything and they should be aspiring towards that.” 

The Government in recent days outlined its plan to reopen schools in the coming weeks. The planned reopening will be carried out in close consultation with Public Health and education partners. 

New academic year 

The Cork city secondary school principal is looking forward to the start of the new academic year. 

“We are quite calm about it given the experience we had last year with the protocols that were in place," Mr Mac on Rí said. "They did work and they in large part kept everyone safe. I would be confident they will again, especially now staff are vaccinated and a lot of the students will also be vaccinated.” 

Mr Mac An Rí also welcomed the planned provision of CO2 monitors for every school nationwide.

“We would be pretty happy that given the same resources are available it will work out once again," he said.

"The installation of the CO2 monitors before the new term starts will also be a big help as ventilation seems to be one of the most important things.”

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