The Christian Brothers have agreed a deal to sell 8.5 acres of lands at Clonkeen College including sports pitches for development, the money will be used to pay the remainder of the monies owed to the redress board, although People Before Profit is aware how important the redress is, we do not believe that the only option available to the Christian Brothers is to take away the pitches whiach are so important to the young people not only in the public school but also the various sports clubs that use them.
The Christian Brothers claim to dedicate their activities to looking after and educating boys and young men – it would be deeply ironic if they were to claim this while at the same time depriving the same boys and young men of these playing fields.
The government and/or the Minister for Education, Richard Bruton, should be immediately insisting that the playing fields be transferred into the ownership of the state and kept for use by the school. He should make clear to the Christian Brothers that it is not acceptable to pay their debt to the state by stealing these playing fields from the pupils of Clonkeen College.
It is an utterly unacceptable situation that a school that is financed by the public purse, and funds that have been raised by the school and the Parents Association, should have its pitches taken away by the religious congregations. The school and its lands are properly the property of the public and should not be sacrificed to deal with the past misdemeanours of the religious congregations.