Teachers' Union says feeder school tables 'celebrate inequality'

Teachers' Union says feeder school tables 'celebrate inequality'

The feeder school tables “celebrate inequality”, according to a teachers’ union that says the tables do not reflect a school’s contribution to disadvantaged students.

The claim comes as the latest feeder school results, published today, reveal that 17 of the top 20 schools that send the most students to college are either fee-paying institutions or are based in affluent areas.

John MacGabhann, General Secretary of the Teachers’ Union of Ireland said it was its view that the feeder school tables are driven by curiosity but “celebrate inequality”.

They tell us precisely what we already knew, and they tell us exactly the same thing every year. They celebrate, in our view, inequality.

He said the tables create a ‘false narrative’ that the institutions that have the highest proportion of students who go onto third level are the best schools that provide the best teaching.

“Neither of those propositions are correct. There are schools throughout the country that are providing absolutely superb educational services to students who don’t and will never figure in the league tables,” he told RTÉ’s Morning Ireland.

Mr MacGabhann said the tables do not reflect the schools that provide for children with special needs, or for those children for whom English is not their first language or those who assist children dealing with homelessness.

“None of the rich value that those schools provide to their communities and to society is captured [in the league tables],” he said.

Meanwhile Solidarity & Socialist Party TD for Cork North Central Mick Barry said the findings “show the class bias in our education”.

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