Muir pleased that North Down Council supports shared schooling

I welcome the decision by North Down Borough Council to support my motion expressing support for shared schooling.

Council ratified its decision to endorse my motion at its meeting on Tuesday 22 November 2011. The motion stated: “That this Council calls upon the Northern Ireland Assembly and Executive to urgently deliver an education system fit for the 21st century by developing more shared educational opportunities, where children learn and play together.”

We currently have 85,000 spare places within our school system across Northern Ireland which still, unfortunately, remains largely segregated. We have an excellent opportunity to reshape our education system towards a new shared and more efficient future. 

I am extremely pleased that North Down Council endorsed my motion. Whilst DUP support for my motion and shared education is to be welcomed the opposition expressed by some in the Ulster Unionist Party is regrettable.

The Alliance Party has consistently supported shared and integrated education. North Down has plenty of examples of shared schooling which we should showcase and publicise whilst also examining the many opportunities that still remain for more collaboration and sharing.

By passing this motion North Down Council has sent a clear message that we prefer collaboration to closure. This a very positive move and is great news for North Down