Thursday, 7 May 2009
Liam Twomey (Fine Gael)
I wish to comment briefly on this issue, which is very important. We have been through recessions before and we have all made sacrifices before. It has been accepted always that the Protestant minority in this country has a particular ethos which has been protected since the foundation of this State despite all the trials and tribulations we have experienced. The support given by the State to Protestant schools is not elitism but an acceptance, even a tolerance, of religious diversity, not only in education but in our society as a whole.
The Fianna Fáil-Green Party Government took this action and therefore I must ask whether there has been an official change in policy within the Department of Education and Science such as we have not seen since the foundation of this State. I would like the Minister of State to give a comprehensive answer to the question asked by Senator John Paul Phelan.