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Educate Together school gets go-ahead for Westport


Áine Ryan

MAYO’S third Educate Together National School (ETNS) is on course to be opened in Westport in September 2019. While an official confirmation has not been made about its location, The Mayo News understands that the old social welfare offices on Prospect Avenue is a possible site, pending planning permission.
A Department of Education and Skills spokesperson said yesterday (Monday): “The department has been working with Educate Together to secure a premises for an Educate Together school in Westport. While a premises has been secured, arrangements regarding delivery of the school are currently being finalised. Further details will become available in due course.”
Speaking to The Mayo News yesterday, campaigner Redmond Cabot warmly welcomed the news, saying that such a development was ‘an overdue, most welcome, exciting, and vibrant day for the pluralist society we live in’.
“Thankfully Westport already is blessed with superb and excellent schools that are to be commended and appreciated. From a structural, legislative, and strategic point of view how we wish to live in today’s society/world – notwithstanding the fact the schools run by religious patrons have been the cause of so much good and happiness, as well as so much bad and  unhappiness –  it is absolutely vital  an option is provided to parents and pupils for patronage of schools by non-religious organisations,” Mr Cabot said.
An Educate Together spokeswoman also welcomed the Department of Education’s decision to proceed with the project.  Westport ETNS will join Newtownwhite ETNS in Ballina and Castlebar ETNS to become the third Educate Together National School in Mayo.
Parents interested in enrolling their child in Westport ETNS in 2019 should contact newschools@educatetogether.ie.