Catholic Church welcomes States’ decision on schools

THE Catholic Church has welcomed the States’ decision to allow it to continue to appoint only Catholics as head teachers of its schools in the island.

Bishop Philip Egan said that both the diocese and the island’s Catholic community welcomed the vote to allow the Church to continue to appoint only Catholics as head teachers of its schools in the island. (Picture by Sophie Rabey, 30163295)
Bishop Philip Egan said that both the diocese and the island’s Catholic community welcomed the vote to allow the Church to continue to appoint only Catholics as head teachers of its schools in the island. (Picture by Sophie Rabey, 30163295)

Following this week’s resounding support for Deputy Bob Murray’s amendment to Employment & Social Security’s proposals, Bishop Philip Egan said that both the diocese and the island’s Catholic community welcomed the vote.

He had visited the island to meet Policy & Resources president Peter Ferbrache and other States members ahead of this week’s debate to express the church’s concern.

‘I am very grateful to Deputy Ferbrache who hosted a discussion with several deputies, who all took the time to discuss this with us so that our concerns could be fully considered,’ he said.

‘This decision enables parents to confidently continue to choose Catholic schools for their children and to benefit from the legacy of partnership with the States of Guernsey which has been in place for 150 years.’

The support that many islanders and States members had shown was greatly appreciated by the Bishop, the head teachers and staff, and the wider Catholic community, he said.

Notre Dame du Rosaire primary school head Mary Robertshaw said she was ‘absolutely delighted’ by the decision and the support the schools had received in the island and from the diocese.

‘I now look forward to getting on with leading Notre Dame du Rosaire, working with my fantastic staff, children, parents and carers to provide the best spiritual, moral and academic education for all our children.’

Canon PJ Smith, Episcopal Vicar for Education for the diocese, said the church looked forward to working with the States as a partner in education as well as in other aspects of island life in the years ahead.

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