Clegg backs integrated education in NI

Published Friday, 21 June 2013
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Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has said he is in support of integrated education in Northern Ireland during visit to Londonderry.

Clegg backs integrated education in NI
The Deputy PM visited an integrated school in Derry during his trip to NI. (© Pacemaker)

He was in Northern Ireland for a meeting of the British Irish Council at the University of Ulster's Magee Campus.

The talks were chaired by First Minister Peter Robinson and deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness, with Taoiseach Enda Kenny also in attendance.

The 20th British Irish Council Summit focused on the economy, bringing down energy prices tackling youth unemployment.

The Lib Dem leader has already announced a start-up loan scheme for young entrepreneurs to be extended to Northern Ireland.

He later visited Oakgrove Integrated Primary School along with Alliance leader David Ford.

"I'm a huge supporter of integrated schools for the simple reason that they teach positive values to little children," Mr Clegg commented.

"They're taught to treat everyone with the same degree of respect, to treat people fairly wherever they come from, whatever faith, whatever community they come from and I think that is something that has to be a good thing at a time when all communities want to, by and large, live side by side in a peaceful and prosperous Northern Ireland."

"I was very pleased that Nick took time to visit Oakgrove Integrated School," Mr Ford said.

"He was keen to see the good work that is being done to improve community relations between children from different traditions. I hope that the visit of the Deputy Prime Minister will give a further boost to the great work that this sector is doing.

"Nick's support for the integrated sector follows that of President Barack Obama who visited Enniskillen Integrated Primary School on Monday.

He said the visits highlight the importance of integrated schools in a strategy for a shared future.

© UTV News
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8 Comments
Frosty in Here wrote (305 days ago):
@Steven in Belfast wrote (3 days ago): "Londonderry." Maybe they should split the difference and call it Donderry? Or change the name of it altogether since no-one can seem to agree on what to call the place, even Translink goes to two places at once. What about the city of sectarian bigots on a hill with no jobs and no prospects?
Sanity Prevails in North Belfast wrote (307 days ago):
Until generations of children from all communities are forced to grow up together and interact, we will continue to enforce our community divides. Integrated education is a positive step forward
Colin in South Down wrote (307 days ago):
Being taught by the De La Salle Brothers I was taught "to treat everyone with the same degree of respect, to treat people fairly wherever they come from, whatever faith, whatever community they come from." These Christian values were not my primary source of "love thy neighbour" rather they enhanced and supported the foundation that I got from my parents. It is not schools that need changing, it is parents that need to teach their children these values. Government needs to realise that it's parents that raise children and not opinionated politicians.
Steve O'Neill in Belfast wrote (307 days ago):
Is he related to the Nick Clegg who recently decided to send his own children to RC schools?
linda in NI wrote (307 days ago):
The promotion of integrated eduction alone is undermining the the excellent work & education that is provided in the other sectors. My children are educated in the controlled sector with each religion & none and while they believe in their own faith they have the greatest respect for their friends of different persuasions. Its just a pity some schools in the controlled sector do not get the new school build is they deserve. In other words manners & respect come free & start at home
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