The Archbishop of Dublin has reiterated his willingness to divest some primary schools of their Catholic patronage if that is what parents want.
Speaking at an education conference in Dublin today, Diarmuid Martin said he believed ways could be found to extend the role of other patronage models.
He said he had no ambition to be in charge of schools against the will of parents.
The Catholic Church currently controls more than 3,000 of the State's 3,200 primary schools.
Today's conference is discussing new ways to manage primary schools in an increasingly multicultural and secular Ireland.
Meanwhile, Education Minister Batt O'Keefe has announced that a new model of patronage will begin on a pilot basis in Scoil Ghrainne Phibblestown and Scoil Choilm in Porterstown, Dublin, this September.
These national schools will take in children from all religious and non-religious backgrounds.