Extra £300 million for shared and integrated education in Northern Ireland

Shared and integrated cross-community education programmes in Northern Ireland are to receive an extra £300 million following Monday’s Budget, the Chancellor said. The Belfast Telegraph reports.

The money is part of a previously-announced commitment made by the UK Government following the Stormont Fresh Start Agreement with the main local political parties.

Northern Ireland Secretary Karen Bradley said: “Today’s announcement shows this government’s support for an inclusive future in Northern Ireland, with £300 million for shared and integrated education.”

Integrated education involves the teaching of Catholic and Protestant children together.

Most schools are overseen by either the state, attended mainly by Protestant youngsters, or the Catholic church, meaning traditionally pupils were separated by denomination.

Integrated Education Fund chief executive Tina Merron welcomed the draw down of extra cash from Westminster coffers.

She said: “Fifteen integrated schools around Northern Ireland have been waiting for more than two years for proposals to progress, and we look forward to seeing these projects now being able to move forward so that more families can access places in integrated education.”

The biggest school building project in Northern Ireland will see six schools built on the site of the former Lisanelly army barracks in the town.

Read more Extra £300 million for shared and integrated education in Northern Ireland

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