'Anomaly' of Ulster prep subsidy

2nd December 1994 at 00:00
Northern Ireland's preparatory schools are receiving a little-known subsidy from public funds, an academic at the University of Ulster has disclosed.

Dr Bob Osborne says the Department of Education last year made a grant of nearly Pounds 1.5 million for 3,100 pupils in the prep departments of voluntary grammar schools. The payment is coming to light as schools publish their figures under local management. This year the grant has been reduced from 50 per cent of approved teaching costs to 40 per cent. As a result the subsidy to the prep departments has been trimmed to just over Pounds 1.35m this year - an average of Pounds 432 for each of 3,129 pupils.

Dr Osborne argues in an article due to be published in the Journal of Social Policy that the subsidy is in conflict with the Government's policy of equality of opportunity and equal treatment for all people in Northern Ireland, since all the prep schools are attached to Protestant grammar schools.

It also, he says, creates an anomaly in the Government's Targeting Social Need policy, adopted in 1991 to direct spending more sharply towards the areas and people in greatest need.

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number


The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now