Return to Education menu


Clerical reaction rules in Meath school

The face of confessional reaction showed its face in Co, Meath with moves against a primary school principal because of his opposition to religious segregation.

The board of Gaelscoil Thulach na nÓg in Dunboyne wants to sack the principal, Mr Tomas Ó Dúlaing.  Parents and teachers at the school claim the principal had only sought to defend the rights of a Protestant minority of pupils. Mr Ó Dulaing’s view was that preparation for Communion should take place outside normal school hours.

The issue has implications for other schools, particularly those inter-denominational schools which use the Irish language and fall under the ambit of Foras Pátrúnachta.

Supporters of the Catholic church, who have sat still through a whole litany of cases of physical and sexual abuse by clergy – many in an educational setting - and expressed no concern that almost none of the clergy have faced any punishment now act when a principal defends the democratic rights of its pupils.  The action is all of a piece with Bertie Ahern’s decision that the working class taxpayer would pay the compensation bill for the church and the decision by the prosecution service that hundreds of cases will be filed and no action taken.

The Irish National Teachers’ Organisation (INTO) reacted angrily to the case but restricted its response to seeking legal advice.


 Return to top of page