On Monday 27 March, the Minister for Education, Norma Foley TD, announced a change of patronage for Saint Enda’s primary school, Whitefriar Street, Dublin, with the full approval and agreement of the Archbishop of Dublin, Dermot Farrell.
This followed engagement with the school in line with the consultation process undertaken by an independent facilitator appointed by the Department of Education, who worked with the full cooperation of the Education Office of the Archdiocese of Dublin.
Speaking on the change of patronage, Archbishop Dermot Farrell said, “I wish to express my sincere thanks to all those involved in this consultation process, in particular the school staff, board of management, parents, and the school and parish community who were part of the process.
“A particular word of thanks to the Carmelite Order for the manner in which they have facilitated and provided for primary education in Saint Enda’s over many many years.”
The Archbishop of Dublin continued, “I once again, as Patron of primary schools, confirm my support for the reconfiguration of patronage within the Archdiocese in order to reflect the growing diversity of Irish society. I look forward to continuing cooperation with the Department of Education in order to bring this about.
Archbishop Farrell concluded, “Much has been learnt from the existing process which can now be built on. As has been shown, there are no easy solutions to a complex situation: consensus is vital. I, along with the other Catholic Patrons, will continue to work with the Department to identify remaining barriers to the building of that consensus. This includes reassuring Catholic parents that their choice of a school with a Catholic patronage and ethos will continue to be secured and facilitated within the education system.”