Part of Oral Answers to Questions – in the Northern Ireland Assembly at 2:15 pm on 12th March 2013.

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Photo of John O'Dowd John O'Dowd Sinn Féin 2:15 pm, 12th March 2013

My Department has a duty to facilitate and promote integrated education.  My Department provides funding for the Council for Integrated Education to assist the development of integrated schools for public benefit.  Funding of £628,000 has been allocated for 2012-13.  DE also provides funding to help schools with the process of transformation to the integrated sector.  That assists schools in the initial stages of the transformation process, with the employment of a teacher from the minority community in the school to assist with religious education.  The budget available for 2012-13 was £261,000.

So, we are making practical measures available.  We have support measures available for schools to move towards integration, but it is a matter for the school and the community it serves.