Further Growth for Integrated Education

Northern Ireland Council for Integrated Education Press Release:

26 May, 2021. For immediate release

Further Growth for Integrated Education as Minster says ‘Yes’ to Transformation of Harding Memorial PS.

The Northern Ireland Council for Integrated Education (NICIE) welcomes the announcement from the Department of Education that Harding Memorial Primary School, Belfast has been successful in their proposal to Transform to Integrated status.

Chief Executive Officer of NICIE, Roisin Marshall stated: “Harding Memorial Primary School has worked tirelessly on their proposal to Transform to Integrated Status. We offer our congratulations to the whole school community. Transformation to Integrated status requires the backing of parents through a ballot and we are delighted that the Minister has met the demand from parents at the school. We believe that, as well as delivering a high-quality education, Integrated schools play an important role in building a more reconciled society”.

The Northern Ireland Council for Integrated Education (NICIE) has been providing support alongside the Integrated Education Fund to Harding Memorial since 2018, leading to the proposal being published by the Department of Education in March 2021. On receiving the successful news, Principal of Harding Memorial P.S, Mr Stephen Cumper stated: “We are delighted with the Minister’s decision. We can now continue to build on our already inclusive ethos and our commitment to welcoming pupils from all backgrounds. Children are at the heart of the school and the school has been at the heart of the local community for over 100 years. We look forward to providing a quality, inclusive education for the children of this area for the next 100 years and beyond.”

Harding Memorial P.S will Transform to Integrated status from September 2021 alongside Seaview P.S, Glenarm and Carrickfergus Central P.S. who were recently approved by the Minister. These Transformations combined will increase the available places at Integrated Primary Schools by over 500.

Harding Memorial Primary School will become the 32nd school to be approved for Transformation to Integrated status since the legislation was created in 1989.  NICIE welcomes engagement with schools of any sector or management type that wish to explore how Integrated Education can enable them to build an intentionally diverse, inclusive and sustainable school.