Detention of children


Children between the ages of 10 and 16 sentenced by the courts to a period of detention are sent to the Oberstown Children Detention Campus. 17-year-olds sentenced after 31 March 2017 are also sent to the Oberstown Children Detention Campus. People aged 18 years or over may be sent to prison.

Children detention schools

Former Industrial Schools and Reformatory Schools were called children detention schools and were managed by the Irish Youth Justice Service which is part of the Department of Children and Youth Affairs. There were 3 children detention schools which were considered suitable to detain remanded and committed children. They were:

  • Oberstown Boys School
  • Oberstown Girls School
  • Trinity House School

Male offenders aged 16 to 21 were also sent to places of detention instead of prison. The main place of detention was St. Partick's Institution, which was formerly known as Borstal and took male offenders between the ages of 16 and 21. St. Patrick's Institution was closed on 7 April 2017.

Oberstown Children Detention Campus

A new national children detention facility for children under the age of 18 has been developed at Oberstown. Since June 2016, the 3 detention schools listed above have been amalgamated to form the Oberstown Children Detention Campus.

Girls and boys from the age of 10 and up to the age of 18 sentenced to a period of detention by the courts are now detained at the Oberstown campus.

Page edited: 18 August 2020