The Church of Ireland Board of Education (Northern Ireland) has expressed its concern for the welfare of children and young people, who as a group have been severely affected by the Covid–19 pandemic, and its thanks to all schools and to all organisations that support children and young people.
The Archbishop of Armagh, the Most Revd John McDowell, Chair of the Board, said: ‘As a Board of Education and as a Church, deeply involved in education at all levels, we wish to commend the work of all principals, teachers, staff and governors in their work to maintain learning, and to support children and young people in their education at this time of great social upheaval. It is difficult to think of words which are emphatic enough to commend the achievement of our schools.
‘The Board is also conscious of the vital work being undertaken by youth workers and volunteers (including those serving through activities run by the Churches) and other statutory and voluntary services. The Board wishes to particularly thank those involved in work to calm tensions and provide positive leadership to young people in areas where there has been a potential for violence.’
Dr Peter Hamill, Secretary to the Board of Education, stated: ‘For many years, youth workers and volunteers have been the unsung heroes of supporting young people with their mental health and many other issues.’
The Board welcomes the Independent Review of Education being undertaken as a commitment from the New Decade New Approach agreement, and the Board looks forward to engaging with the panel once it is appointed.