Bishop raps schools focused only on academic success

A Catholic school that thinks only of academic success is a “poor” school.

Friday, 31st January 2020, 12:44 pm
Updated Sunday, 2nd February 2020, 6:12 am
Bishop Donal McKeown.

This is the view of Derry’s Bishop, Dr Donal McKeown, who made his comments at the launch of Catholic Schools Week 2020.

The Bishop added that a Catholic school that thinks some pupils don’t deserve the best is also a poor school.

He said: “In a society where ‘good’ is seen to be the same as ‘smart’, ‘powerful’, and ‘famous’, this year’s emphasis on the possibility of living in harmony is not just a nice message but a core part of the Gospel teaching... People are able to build community rather than just be focused on ‘me’. People are able to value the contributions of others rather than merely competing or comparing.

“The Gospel calls each of our young people to believe they can be saints and not just wimps or nobodies.

“Jesus says that, with God’s help and vision, we can make this a welcoming world that loves life and treasures everybody’s unique identity and contribution.”

The Bishop also referred to recent political exchanges proposing one education system in Northern Ireland.

He said: “I am intrigued that, in an age where apparently diversity and variety in everything must be cherished, accepted and never criticised, we might not be allowed to have any diversity in education. If we want to have an educational structure that delivers quality outcomes for all, helps build a more united society and is value for money, can I suggest that the family of Catholic schools is excellent at all three... The ideal is to have harmony in a diverse education system - not banal uniformity.”