UN to monitor racial and religious discrimination in Irish schools

The United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racism and Discrimination (CERD) will be monitoring Ireland’s record on this issue at meetings from 14 February to 11 March.

The CERD sees a link between racial and religious discrimination. In its last report on Ireland, in 2005, the CERD asked Ireland to establish more nonreligious schools and to ensure that pupils are not discriminated against because of their religion or lack of religion.

Atheist Ireland has sent a submission to the CERD in advance of the meetings at which the CERD will be examining Ireland’s record since then.

You can read the submission here on our Teach, Don’t Preach website.



Michael Nugent


  1. Avatar
    Martin Knox February 07, 2011

    The issue of ethos is one that has been introduced by the Catholic Church to circumvent equality legislation. It is not illegal in Ireland to discriminate against a person that applies for a primary school job who declares (honestly) at interview that he/she does not subscribe to the Catholic ethos. Most of those appointed don’t subscribe to the ethos but declare that they do.
    There is an even more serious issue, that of indoctrination which is ‘fundamental’ to the education service provision in Ireland. I think that this is a human rights issue and intellectual abuse of the most sinister sort. This should not be allowed.

  2. Avatar
    sash March 12, 2011

    My Youngest Son has been refused a place in a Roman Catholic School In Kilcoole. He has two siblings in the school and there was no problem with them as at the time the school was happy enough to use them to keep student numbers up and to contribute to the number of teachers in the school.
    Now this yr, My Son is the only non Catholic Child to look for a place and amazingly enough his FIRST application form was the only 1 to go missing so not only is he a late applicant now but also a Non Catholic.
    I spoke to the parish priest and as far as he is concerned and told me to my face that the School in question should be 100% Roman Catholic.
    I have to remove my other two Children now as i will not be able to commute between 2 different schools in different Villages for drop off and collection times.
    The School has allowed Children younger than my Son into the School.
    Can anyone advise me on how to fight this???