THE children of parents who do not practise religion are faced
with having to undergo "pragmatic baptisms" to obtain a place in
Irish schools, because 90 per cent of primary schools in the
country are under Roman Catholic control, the Humanist Association
of Ireland has said.
The association is now calling on the government to ban schools
from asking for baptism certificates or other documentation to
prove religious affiliation as a means to gain admission to such
centres of education.
The leader of the Humanists Association of Ireland, Brian
Whiteside, is to meet the Taoiseach, Enda Kenny, and the Minister
for Education, Jan O'Sullivan, next Thursday, for the first time
since the structured dialogue for churches and secular groups was
established ten years ago by the then Taoiseach, Bertie Ahern. Mr
Whiteside said that education was to be at the top of the
"There is a new reality that has to be addressed," he said. "One
third of couples are getting married in non-religious ceremonies.
It is reasonable to ask what sort of schools they want for their