Source: Traditional Unionist Voice – Northern Ireland
Jim Allister said:
“Last week the BBC ran prominent stories about a short briefing paper produced by the Ulster University’s Unesco centre of education on the governance of schools. At no point to my knowledge did the BBC say that the briefing paper was funded by the Integrated Education Fund. Surely this fact, which is made clear on the back page of the briefing paper, should have featured in the story which led the BBC Northern Ireland news page for most of Tuesday past?
“As the Controlled Schools’ Support Council (CSSC) pointed out in a response which was given minimal coverage last week – and has never been covered on the BBC news webpages:-
“The controlled education sector is the largest education sector in Northern Ireland, comprising 49% of all schools. Controlled schools welcome pupils from all faiths and none, with pupils from all communities, socio-economic and religious backgrounds. Indeed the sector prides itself on and celebrates its inclusivity and diversity.”
“Why should the Integrated Education Fund’s role in this story be covered up? Indeed, why did a paper which ran to just seven pages ever merit such coverage in the first instance?
“The truth is that the controlled sector has always taken thousands of pupils from both sides of the community, yet the integrated sector thinks it is the solution to all of Northern Ireland’s problems.
“I have today tabled the following written question to the Minister of Education:
To ask the Minister of Education can the Minister confirm that the sponsoring body which produced the Ulster University “Transforming Education: The Governance of Schools Briefing Paper” is funded by the Integrated Education fund and in consequence what independence attaches to the paper.
“I for one will not be embarrassed to defend out controlled sector.”