Masterful Teachers

19 July 2012 News

Gareth and Zelda help debut brand new children’s rights course.

Armagh teacher, Gareth McLaughlin and Antrim teacher, Zelda Scarlett proved masterful when it comes to children’s rights thanks to a new course delivered jointly with the Commissioner for Children and Young People and St. Mary’s College, Belfast.

Gareth and Zelda were the first Master’s degree students to take the new and unique module on ‘Child Rights and Education’.

The module brings the issue of children’s rights to life and makes them practical within a classroom setting.

Masters Module Students 2012.jpg

Both Gareth and Zelda, though the Master’s degree module, have developed a distinct advantage in delivering the revised Northern Ireland Curriculum in a way that involves the active participation of children in their classrooms.

Their respective schools can now benefit from the support of the Children’s Commissioner’s office to help embed their learning into school’s policies and practice to bring the ethos of rights into the very heart of the school.

“Teachers are vital in helping shape our communities and helping children and young people have a say in decisions that affect their lives,” said Commissioner for Children and Young People, Patricia Lewsley – Mooney.

“Gareth and Zelda deserve to be congratulated for being the first teachers in Northern Ireland to take this module and for making children’s rights a priority when teaching.”

Frank Quinn, Professional Studies Coordinator, St Mary’s University College said: “Gareth and Zelda were excellent students and by taking part in this new module they can make a significant contribution in terms of increasing awareness of rights among the children they teach.”

Gareth Said ‘This module opened my eyes to some of the experiences my students go through and gave me an enhanced perspective on their rights as learners and my role as an educator’

Zelda Said ‘This module gave me a greater insight into the rights of children and how these can have an effect in the classroom environment, I can’t wait to put my learning into practice in the new school year’

For further information about the Masters module ‘Children’s Rights and Education’ or for information about applying next year please telephone 028 9032 7678 or email


Notes to Editors:

  • Photo: (L -R) Gareth McLaughlin (Masters Student), Frank Quinn (Professional Studies Coordinator, St Mary’s University and module Tutor), Patricia Lewsley – Mooney (Northern Ireland Commissioner for Children and Young People), Niall Moore (Participation Officer, NICCY and module Tutor)and Zelda Scarlett (Masters Student)
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