Da Blonde Ponders On: Education


‘This is lovely but WHEN does it end?’ *
Heli my Baby Girl – age 4 on her first day of school in Ireland.

Once the children begin school, the time takes wings, and before one has hardly had time to blink, out they come off the education system, and move on into the further study. In Ireland the education career for the children – I do see it as a job for them that lasts for fifteen long years – begins at the tender age of three, as this is the age when the most of them start the pre-school – which is private and very costly – then they go on to the ‘big school’ at four that is ‘free’ if the child goes to the national education schools but if he/she goes to the private primary education it is astronomical in cost, when all things are added up.

The Big Girl, Becki, began her pre-school at the age of four, and then she went on to the National School at five, though. We thought that it was better for her but she ended being the oldest in every class that she was in. Becki did not like this, she told me later. Heli began hers at three and then went on to the Primary School at four.

Then there is at the age of 12 until 18 the Secondary Education which was the international and very highly regarded private school called, St.Andrew’s College – in the link is the Headmaster who is still the same great man – which is situated in Booterstown about five miles south of Dublin along the coast. Here is the Wikipedia on the St.Andrew’s School. The absolutely very best thing about the college is that a great number of the students and even some of the teachers are from all over the world. I particularly liked the International Food Fair which was organized by the students every year. The food was always top-notch quality made by the parents and the children themselves. Twas a night that I did not want to miss ever! In this link there is further iNFO on the Emerald Isle in my Travelogue to Dublin which I compiled last year.

Ireland as a country is such a small pond that in order to get anywhere professionally one must have great connections in all directions; connections that are formed during the years in the schools and colleges. The other name for this system would be: the Old Boys Network, sure. In Finland and in Sweden the pre-school begins at the age of 6, and then by 7-years all the children are sitting down to a serious study until they come out of the mill at 18. Or should I say, those who choose to do the whole study thing right to the end.

How is the school system in Your country?

Tis for now. Riihele – in the reminiscing mode. xx

* Heli really did say this very thing to her most lovely teacher the very first day in the Powerscourt National School -picture in the link – in Enniskerry in County Wicklow, Ireland – founded in 1818, by the way.



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