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Ruane welcomes European teachers to Stormont

8 April, 2008

Sinn Féin Education Minister Caitríona Ruane welcomed teachers from Sweden and Germany to Stormont today.

The teachers are visiting St Anne's Primary School, Finaghy as part of the Comenius multilateral partnership, an international educational programme promoted and funded by the European Union.

Ms Ruane commented

"Programmes such as these are invaluable in helping to promote co-operation between schools here in the North of Ireland and Europe. Staff and students are able to work together to build a better understanding of other cultures and teaching practices.

"I hope that the visiting teachers enjoy their stay here and are able to continue to build on the excellent work that has already been done. It is my understanding that the teachers from St Anne's have already visited Germany and Sweden providing an excellent opportunity to see first hand the differing educational techniques and exchange ideas." ENDS


The Comenius Programme is a project, promoted and funded by the European Union. It aims to promote transnational co-operation between schools in Europe. Johann Amos COMENIUS (1592-1670) was a Czech-born theologian and philosopher. He was one of the founding fathers of modern education and believed in bringing education to all.

Comenius Multilateral partnerships are cross-curricular projects that involve at least three schools or colleges from at least three European countries. They enable staff and students to work together with partners in other Comenius eligible countries for the duration of a two year partnership. The Comenius Programme is administered here by the British Council office in Belfast.

St Anne's Primary School, along with three small rural schools in Sweden and a large grammar school in Germany are currently participating in a three year project under the Comenius programme.

Schools participating are:

  • Gudhemsskolan, Broddetorpsskolan and Torbjörntorpsskolan, three small rural primary schools (total of some 350 pupils) near Falköping in Sweden.
  • Augustinerschule, a very large grammar school (1,540 pupils) in Friedberg, near Frankfurt, Germany.
  • St Anne's, a large maintained primary school (approx 900 pupils) in Finaghy, South Belfast.

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