Fourth Report on Advancing Shared Education laid to the Northern Ireland Assembly

Education Minister Paul Givan today announced that a further Report to the Assembly on Advancing Shared Education has now been laid to the Assembly.

By Paul Givan MLA

Lagan Valley

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This is the fourth such report following earlier versions laid in 2018, 2020 and 2022, and covers the period April 2022 to March 2024.

The 2024 Report outlines progress made in advancing Shared Education over the reporting period whilst also highlighting some of the challenges facing Shared Education delivery.

The Minister said: “I welcome that over the reporting period, significant progress has been made in returning pupil participation towards pre-Covid levels. This is evident, with over 600 pre-school settings and primary, post primary and special schools across Northern Ireland being involved in Shared Education structures.

Work has also continued on the capital infrastructure programme to support Shared Education delivery. Furthermore, the Department and the Education Authority have continued to encourage, facilitate and promote Shared Education, working in partnership with other education and sectoral bodies, to support schools and other educational settings to deliver high quality shared learning experiences for their pupils.”

The Report also sets out a series of next steps designed to further develop and embed Shared Education across the education system and beyond over the coming years.

The Minister added: “Shared Education has seen significant growth, enabling participating schools and other educational settings to work together in partnership. This is bringing crucial opportunities for children and young people across different religious, cultural and social backgrounds to learn with, from and about each other, thereby building trust, connections and friendships which can extend into family and community life.

“As we move forward in our efforts towards further embedding a shared approach across wider society, it is recognised that this is a continuing process and one not without its challenges. It will take work. What is clear, is that everyone has a role to play to help overcome any such obstacles. By working collectively we can ensure that Shared Education continues to be a success and enable our children and young people to have the best start in life.”

The 2024 Report is available on the DE website –

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