27 February, 2018 - Minister Bruton publishes preliminary enrolments in Primary and Post-primary schools

Enrolments in multi-denominational schools increase by 9 per cent in a year

The Department of Education and Skills today published preliminary enrolments in Primary and Post-primary schools in September 2017. Final data will be published in June 2018.

 Main findings:

  • Total enrolments in mainstream primary schools stood at 555,241 at September 2017. This is an increase of 5,041 pupils, or 0.9 per cent, on September 2016 (550,200). Since September 2011, there has been an increase of 46,203 or approx. 9%.
  • When examined by ethos, almost half of this year’s increase was in enrolments in multi-denominational schools which increased by 9.0% at primary level with an additional 2,448 pupils. This compares with denominational primary schools which increased by 0.5 per cent, or 2,593 pupils
  • At post primary level, total enrolments stood at 357,442 (enrolments in PLC courses are not included in today’s release). This is an increase of nearly 5,200 compared to September 2016 enrolments. Since September 2011, there has been an increase of 34,939 or approx. 11%.
  • Again, almost half of the increase in post primary schools since September 2016, is in enrolments in multi-denominational schools, which increased by 20.3% (2,486 pupils) over the twelve months, far ahead of the rise in denominational schools which saw their numbers rise by just 2,699 (0.8%) in post primary schools.
  • Schools where all subjects are taught through Irish grew, by 600, which is more than twice the rate (3.2%) of the general increase for all schools (1.5%).

Commenting on the data, Minister Bruton said: “We are very lucky in Ireland to have a growing school age population. This enrolment data shows a very significant increase in student numbers. We hired 2,800 extra teachers in the 2017/18 school year and last year we built nearly 20,000 extra and replacement school places to respond to this demand. We will continue to ensure that there are enough school places for our children and that state of the art facilities are being provided.

“This data also shows that demand for more multi-denominational school places is growing. This Government is strongly committed to providing more choice and diversity. We are committed to delivering 400 multi-denominational schools by 2030. I announced a new process to accelerate this provision last year and we will continue to work towards increasing choice and diversity for parents and children”.

Links to the reports are available here:

Statistical Bulletin:

PROVISIONAL DATA for the 2017/2018 academic year – Primary Schools:

PROVISIONAL DATA for the 2017/2018 academic year – Post Primary Schools

 ENDS

Notes for Editors

Main results of the report:

Primary

  • Total enrolments in mainstream primary schools stood at 555,241 at September 2017, an increase of 5,041 pupils, or 0.9 per cent, on September 2016 (550,200).
  • The fastest growing category in percentage terms was multi-denominational which increased by 9.0 per cent with an additional 2,448 pupils. This compares with Catholic schools which increased by 0.5 per cent, or 2,494 pupils.
  • Enrolments in multi-denominational schools outpaced those in Catholic schools in 9 areas with Kildare having the largest difference (316), followed by South Dublin (216) and Meath (183).
  • Enrolments by Irish language classification show that the category “all subjects through Irish” had the largest increase, at 1.1 per cent, with a smaller increase in the other two categories.

Post-primary

  • Total enrolments in post-primary schools stood at 357,442 at September 2017 - an increase of 5,185 pupils, or 1.5 per cent, on September 2016 (352,257).
  • Pupils in multi-denominational schools increased by 20.3 per cent (2,486 pupils) over the twelve months, far ahead of the rise in Catholic schools which saw their numbers rise by just 1,562 (0.9%).
  • Schools where all subjects are taught through Irish grew at more than twice the rate (3.2%) of the general increase for all schools (1.5%).

The data has been taken from the Primary Online Database and the Post-primary Learners Database held in the Department of Education and Skills and is preliminary in nature.